Curriculum Fair and Social Justice Town Hall!I think this is a great idea - they held a very successful one two years ago that I volunteered to assist with.
I've been pretty critical of MORE since I gave up the ghost almost a year ago. My major critique was that they weren't really a caucus - which I define as a group contending for power with the ruling faction and building broad based alliances inside the union to accomplish that aim, even with people you may not agree with on some issues. MORE is a social justice group and is interested in bigger issues than just how teachers in the classroom are affected.
And that is where Unity Caucus is at its weakest. Protecting teachers in the classroom from principals with way too much power, ceded by the UFT.
On social justice issues it is harder to pin down where Unity falls down, though inside the left in the UFT there is a lit of criticisms of Unity on those grounds - and there is a point - look at the Chicago teacher union demands in this strike where salary is not an issue. The UFT would have taken the money and run a long time ago.
At one of my last meetings I said MORE was fundamentally a closed club (which pissed people off) of people with like interests. Actually I was fine with that and could be a happy member of such a group. But that concept is contrary to an electoral caucus and I was totally against MORE running alone and dividing whatever opposition to Unity that existed. And so it came to pass, a fractured opposition with the group MORE pushed out gravitating towards Unity, the only game in town.
I wonder what might have happened if MORE went to the union for support in this curriclum fair and even offered them a table? Too much bad blood at this time. My argument was that if MORE didn't run that left open more possibilities for the club -- with a wide variety of people while staying true to its principles.
Maybe the MORE brain trust is realizing that and is focusing on its main interests - social justice and curriculum certainly affects teachers in the classroom. I do wonder how much room teachers today have to innovate curricula but why not give it a try? If I'm in the city I might even stop by.
The culturally relevant and sustaining education curriculum fair and town hall is one week away! Please join us for a day of sharing curriculum, music, social justice workshops, and relationship building with educational justice groups
Saturday, November 2nd – 10AM – 3PM at City-As-School at 16 Clarkson St. in Manhattan – Detailed Schedule below
Lunch will be provided (for a suggested donation) – please indicate your dietary needs when you register so we can accomodate. Free childcare available – please pre-register so we can anticipate need. Event is wheelchair accessible.
Activist groups presenting at the town hall include: Teachers Unite, NYCORE, Black Lives Matter in Education Week of Action, Teens Take Charge, Integrate NYC, New Settlement Houses Parent Action Committee, as well as CEC members and parent leaders from around the city.
Workshops during the morning include: School Counseling & LGBTQ issues, Equity and Access for LGBTQ students, LatinX Literature, Dance and Social Justice, Teachers’ unions in the fight for curriculum, Bomba Yo performance, Displacement and gentrification, Social justice through music, Supporting immigrant students, Poetry & Hip Hop as Identity and Community
Schedule for the day is as follows:
|9:00 AM||Set up / Volunteers Arrive|
|9:30||Check in for workshop presenters / sharing curriculum|
|10:00:-10:30||Welcome & Registration, Bomba Yo performance|
|10:30-12:00||Tabling, Workshops, Performances|
|10:30-11:10||Session 1 of Workshops|
|11:20-12:00||Session 2 of Workshops|
|12:00-1:00pm||Lunch Break / Music|
|1:00-1:15||Begin Town Hall|
|1:15-2:00||Town Hall: Relationship building activity/shareout|
|2:00-3:15||Town Hall: Presentations from activist groups / share out|