There's a busy week coming up for The Resistance Fighters fighting the ed deformers. I'm having trouble keeping up.
Fight Back Friday: We are all ! Same Struggle, Same Fight!
I was interviewed by a reporter on Friday who was asking about what we hope to accomplish with Fight Back Fridays. I told her this was a rank and file led movement coming directly out of the schools and not led and promoted by the UFT leadership as March 22 is (we support that too.) But in order to build a union from the bottom up these kinds of actions touch base with people - staff and parents and community who might not be fully informed. So far pockets of activity in long dormant schools have been activated. FBF is a grassroots movement that if it ever reached a couple of hundred schools could begin to have an impact both on the DOE and more importantly, push the UFT towards a stronger defense of public education. Interesting that the reporter didn't seem to like it when I used the term "defense from the attacks on public ed" and tried to put words in my mouth. I haven't seen any article quoting me yet - I think this was the Daily News - the reporter was covering 3 Queens schools FBF actions -Jamaica HS (see the video I posted yesterday), PS 30 and another school.
A FBF tooklit for schools to use with ready made leaflets has been created. So even if all your school does is have people wear black to take your school back or have a lunchtime teach-in on Wisconsin, sign on to the list by email Sam to get your school on the list and get the toolkit: Sam_p_coleman@yahoo.com
One other thing developing: some of the activists are turning FBF into after school Happy Hour meetups with neighboring schools. I'll keep you posted as they come in so you can pop in if one's in your area - or better still, let me know of your school happy hours so others can join.
Events this week
I had a busy last couple of weeks and have not had much time to do much blogging. I was at the Left Forum all day yesterday taping 3 panels, including our standing room only viewing of our filmed response to Waiting for Superman (The Inconvenient Truth Behind WFS) Here is what I have so far for this week. Ed Notes will try to cover as much as possible with video and commentary.
- Monday, Mar. 21: GEM Meeting at CUNY, 5PM: 34st and 5th ave, rm 5414. See the GEM blog for meeting agenda and updates. (Fightback Friday
- Tuesday, Mar. 22: EDUSolidarity- bloggers
Citywide actions in schools - Wear redAs we all know, teachers and our unions, along with those of other public sector employees, face unprecedented attacks in the national media and from local and state governments. It is easy for politicians and the media to demonize the "unions" and their public faces; it is far more difficult to demonize the millions of excellent teachers who are proud union members. Those of us who are excellent teachers and who stand in solidarity with our unions are probably no stranger to the question "Well, why are you involved with the union if you're a good teacher?" It's time for us to stand up and answer that question loudly and clearly. http://www.edusolidarity.us/
- Weds, Mar. 23: PEP meeting at Brooklyn Tech
- Thurs, Mar. 24: Day of Rage Against City Budget Cuts, Rally-5PM @ City Hall, March to Wall Street @ 6PM
- Friday, Mar. 25: Fight Back Friday - school level actions plus press conf at Tweed at 4:30
- Saturday, Mar. 26: NYCORE conference all day at Julia Richman HS campus
Here are some details on the GEM/NYCORE promoted actions :
- Teacher Protections, Protect Children
- Layoffs Hurt Children
- Budget Cuts Hurt Children
- Let's Put Children First
Check out Norms Notes for a variety of articles of interest: http://normsnotes2.blogspot.com/. And make sure to check out the side panel on right for news bits.