Tuesday, March 24, 2009

This Saturday! Education Notes Joins the fightback to save public education

Will charter schools and small elite schools drain away the highest performing students, leaving the public schools and the teachers in them to be branded as failures because they are working with the students who need the most help but are denied the resources to do an effective job? Have we seen the end of the zoned neighborhood school in poor urban school systems? (See today's NY Times on how parents can't get their kids into kindergarten in their own neighborhood schools.)

Conference/Strategy Session on fighting testing/school closings/ATR

We see this conference as a first step in building a coalition of teachers, parents and students to plan campaigns to take back public education from the privateers.

When: Sat. March 28, 12 pm
Where: John Jay College, Room 1311 North Hall Building
445 W 59th St Manhattan

A teacher called me the other day to tell me a poster has "magically" appeared in her school lobby urging parents to seek out school choices. To look at alternatives to that very school. To look at charters as an alternative. To create doubt. To undermine the public schools. She said she was going to tear down that poster. (Remind you of Reagan telling Gorbachov to tear down that wall?)

Other teachers tell me their schools are bleeding population to new charter schools which have hit schools with slick ad campaigns to lure the most active and engaged parents away. The offer smaller class sizes but of course for the kids who need extra help there is no room. Where is the money coming from? Imagine if public schools started draining their budgets to engage in an ad war? There would be some outcry.

Make no mistake about it. There's lots of money to be made by charter school operators by draining funds out of the public schools. Harlem Success' Eva Moskowitz made $370,000 a year managing 4 schools with a total of about 1000 kids from k-3. I'll have some scary video of her rally in Harlem last week up in a few days.

The motto of BloomKlein could be “Let a thousand charter schools bloom."

Every single public school can be threatened with closure, often as a result of undermining them or because some connected real estate interests or charter schools want the building. Every public school teacher is under attack where becoming an ATR permanent sub targeted by the press as "incompetent."

This Saturday is a great opportunity to get involved to resist the attack on public education!

Check out attached flier for details! Please print a copy and give it to a colleague or post in your school.

In 3 short hours you can move from: "I wish I could do something about all this?!@#@$@! in my school, and in my community!"


"Here is what I am doing to make things better not just in my classroom but in my school and in my city!"

Join the grass roots movement inside and outside the UFT, of teachers, parents and students who are sick of the testing madness, tired of seeing our local schools under funded and then shut down because they can't operate on a shoe string budget, tired of seeing teachers and families take the blame when politicians and greedy business leaders are the culprits.


Together we can figure out how to move forward!

The conference is sponsored by the Independent Community of Educators (ICE) and NYCORE with lots of organizations co-sponsoring.

Any questions contact me at 917-992-3734

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