Sunday, January 10, 2010

Weekend Comings and Goings

WBAI Monday 7:45AM:
Mark Torres of the CPE and I will be discussing Patterson call for lifting charter school cap

Lots of weekend wrap up stuff and I didn't get to half of it.

Charter Schools: The Privatization of Public Education?
I missed this video on charter schools last week on the NYCPublicSchoolParent blog. Brian Jones of GEM and Bill Perkins and others:
http://nycpublicschoolparents.blogspot.com/2010/01/new-charter-school-critiques-separate.html



Smith rally last Friday and meeting Monday night
Smith H.S. rallied 100 people to fight against Bloomberg's attempt to close this invaluable gateway for many Bronx working class students. Students led the chants and pleaded passionately to save Smith and its many vocational programs that provide lifelong careers. Many
graduates have earned jobs that service our communities and have even helped build the new Bronx Yankee stadium. In this video , Danny Escobar pours his heart out in the school's defense. Smith has nurtured him as a family and is giving him carpentry skills that are provided nowhere else.


Click to view video by Angel Gonzalez
Save Alfred E. Smith High School - A Gateway for Students


Barrett reveals Thompson as Dirty
The next time you read a New Action leaflet bragging about how they were the only caucus to endorse Bill Thompson, suggest people read this revealing Wayne Barrett piece in the Voice about Thompson's girlfriend/wife museum scam and how Bloomberg helped out.


On DOE playing politics with school grade structure
Teacher:
One of these schools...is very close to my school. It will be a 5-8 school and my principal is worried about losing more 5th grade students. We have already lost one of our 5th grade classes to charter schools. She said the charter schools should not be allowed to have the 5-8 span of grades. (It takes students from both elementary AND middle schools). Also, we have a student who was just readmitted to our school from a charter school. He gave us a hard time from K-4th grade. The mother said that they called her every day to come pick him up or come sit with him in school. The charter school suspended him to home. My principal said how can charter schools suspend kids to home and the public schools cannot? The boy is even more of a problem now. Evidently he was made to wear different colors and sit by himself in class and lunch. If other students talked to him, they received demerits.

On Governance
Parent:
Why would we allow independent and self-governing parent bodies to be regulated literally to death by an autocratic repressive administration that has no moral or operational credibility with parents, students or teachers after 7 years of abuse, neglect and harmful politically-motivated policies? I think the time for working with the powers that be to explain that this initiative won't work, that the consequences of that policy to schools, children families, will be dreadful, followed by ripple effects of harm and months of all of us crying " I told you so" are over. The whole point of mayoral control has been to stave off any democratic process and to be able to ram an agenda down the public's throat. If you had any doubts as to what that agenda may have been, in case you got caught up in the rhetoric and spin, I hope the January PEP agenda with 8 regulations and 22 school closings makes it clear now. Mission accomplished!


Reminder: Norman Thomas Demo and rally
If can remind your contacts of the Demonstration to prevent the phasing out of Norman Thomas it would greatly be appreciated. Demonstrate at Norman Thomas before the hearings on Monday, January 11 between 4 and 5 PM.
It is IMPERATIVE that we convey this message to all our contacts inside and outside of the school. What we say as a body will have a greater impact than what we say inside during the hearings on Monday. Show your support for Our School and Chapter Leader by getting to the picket line and demonstrating to prevent this tragedy from occurring. REMEMBER -THE JOB YOU SAVE MAY VERY WELL BE YOUR OWN! This is not a fear tactic IT IS QUICKLY BECOMING THE REALITY. BLOOMBERG AND KLEIN HAVE DECLARED WAR AGAINST US! EAST 33RD ST, AND PARK AVE. #6 TRAIN-IN SOLIDARITY, NICK LICARI


Bloomberg School Closings Draw Ire

"They dropped a bomb on the schools without any notice,” said William McDonald, a Queens parent and a leader of the Save Our Schools Coalition, a group that opposes the school closings. “The principals didn’t know. The teachers didn’t know. The parents didn’t know.” Full story:
http://www.indypendent.org/2010/01/07/school-closings-2


This is a story that might have legs as we attempt to link these students up with the closing schools activist students.

THE URBAN YOUTH COLLABORATIVE HAS INVITED OUR STUDENTS TO JOIN THEM IN THE FIGHT TO STOP THE MTA CUTS TO STUDENT METROCARDS.

From Caitlyn Ervin of the Urban Youth Collaborative-

This Monday, the Urban Youth Collaborative is hosting a meeting FOR students, led BY students, to come up with an action plan around cuts to student Metrocards. Attached is the flyer—please encourage your children to attend, and forward widely!

Every student deserves to get to school safely and for FREE! And the new proposed cutting of student metro cards by the MTA will hit low-income students of color the hardest. Students need to be at the front of the movement to STOP THE CUTS! This is why UYC is having a Student Union meeting where all students from New York City are invited to come learn about how this issue can potentially affect them and their families, and brainstorm together on how we’re going to fight to stop the cuts.

When: Monday, January 11th @ 5pm
Where: Trinity Parish Hall 74 Trinity Place

Emergency citywide PARENT CONFERENCE on School Closings set for Jan. 16th(

This is being organized by parent activists: The conference planning committee includes Lisa Donlan, Shino Tanikawa, Khem Irby, William McDonald and Monica Major; all active parent leaders from Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and the Bronx. Teachers and students will be involved. The UFT changed its MLK event with Bloomie buddy Calvin Butts from Monday to Jan. 16 but these guys were out there first.

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