Thursday, January 13, 2011

Build the Movement

Some people have laughed at the idea of yet another rally to stop closing schools and charter takeovers amongst other things. What they aren't getting is that this is about organizing - getting people out to become active in some way - to build the forces of resistance - to get a group of people to channel their energies towards building a movement. Will this rally stop school closings? Most likely not. But the idea is to build a movement to a point where the forces are big enough and loud enough to become a difference maker. And yes, to make the activists involved feel good about doing something with other people from multiple schools on the target list, something the UFT refuses to lend its support too (the whys go far and deep and are best left to another time) while being perked up by the sense that they have the support and concerns of a wide variety of people - not only teachers, but parents and community leaders from around the city. What a boost that can be for not only schools under attack but for people who are not under attack but still understand that they can be one day or at least have a basic understanding of the ed deformers- that they are not fooled by phony appeals that closing schools is about education and not politically, ideologically, economically and real estate motivated.

Join a rally to....
Stop the school closings!
Stop charter takeovers
Defend public education
Say no to privatization

Mayor Bloomberg's Department of Education plans to close 26 more schools this year.  Despite the DOE's claim that these school closings are aimed at reforming schools, they have instead opened the door to privately-run charter schools and have limited school options for those affected.  According to the accounts by parents, students and teachers, DOE policies have had the effect of sabotaging the schools that are slated to be closed, not "fixing" them.

Bloomberg has played a shell game with our most vulnerable children, shuffling them around from closing school to closing school.  This process has disproportionately affected students of color, only serving to further perpetuate a separate and unequal school system in New York City.

In addition to closing schools, the DOE plans to grant more public school space to charter schools through co-locations, undermining public school resources and pitting school communities against each other. 

We demand quality resources and support for our public schools, not closings and privatization!

Join parents, students, teachers and community members at a rally to stop school closings.
January 27 4:30 - 6:30 p.m.
City Hall Plaza near the Brooklyn Bridge
Trains:  4, 5, 6, 2, 3, R, A and C

(Lists in formation)
Sponsored by: the Ad Hoc Committee to Stop School Closings and Charter Takeovers, Grassroots Education Movement NYC (GEM), New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE),Coalition for Public Education (CPE), Green Party NYC,
Dee Knight

Endorsing Organizations:
Green Party of New York, Teachers for a Just Contract (TJC), Class Size Matters, Concerned Advocates for Public Education (CAPE), Independent Community of Educators (ICE), Center For Immigrant Families (CIF),
The Puerto Rico Solidarity Network - PRSN NY, People Power Movement, Renaissance School of the Arts-M377(UFT Chapter), City Wide Coalition for Educational Excellence Now, South Bronx Community Council, Black Women Against Urban Violence, Teachers Unite (TU), NYwith UPR (NY with University of Puerto Rico), Dee Knight, The Independent Workers Movement/Movimiento Independiente de Trabajadores, District Leader Chris Owens (52nd Assembly District, Brooklyn)

Help plan the protest!  Join the meeting on Tuesday, January 18 at 5 p.m. in room 5414 of the CUNY Graduate Center, located at 34th Street and 5th Avenue.

Contact for more information.

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