This Week in Education Organizing - December 16, 2016

The Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools Newsletter
  December 16th, 2016

AROS National Day of Action: January 19th
The Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools (AROS) stands for fully funded public schools that provide a quality education to every child. We will not cooperate with Donald Trump’s stated plans to divert billions of public dollars to vouchers and charter schools.  We will not cooperate with his hateful rhetoric and bullying of immigrant children, LGBT students, Muslims and others. We oppose the confirmation of billionaire Betsy DeVos as Secretary of Education. We demand safe and nurturing schools where children can learn without being frightened or harassed.  We will work for policies and practices that strengthen our public schools, not dismantle them.

We are encouraging strong, non-violent and spirited local events on January 19th – the day before the inauguration -- events that focus on the challenges that we are facing in public education today.  This is a day of local resistance to the dismantling of public education! 
Join us.  For more information, and to register to organize or attend an event in your city, go to our website:  Click on “Day of Action” for downloadable flyers and other materials.

Coalition for Educational Justice in New York Demands Anti-Bias Training in All NYC Schools
Parents with CEJ in New York City held a rally at the NY Department of Education last week to demand that employees at every NYC public school receive anti-bias training in the face of a disturbing increase in hate crimes in New York City since Election Day.

Read CEJ’s proposal/demands to the NY Department of Education here.

"We are under attack right now in so many ways, and the chilling effect from insensitive comments by staffers and teachers in our schools," said City Council Member Carlos Menchaca. "Or kids bullying other kids, and no one doing anything about it is really eroding the trust and the safety that our kids need to learn in our schools."

The NY Police Department reports that hate crimes in the city have increased by 115 percent since Election Day.  Many in the city are blaming the spike on the hate-filled rhetoric of the presidential campaign.  This week, the NY City Council passed a resolution reaffirming the city's commitment to remain a so-called Sanctuary City, a safe haven for immigrants, regardless of their legal status. Read more about the action here.     Photo credit: Alex Zimmerman, Chalkbeat

NAACP Task Force Holding a Series of Public Hearings on Charter Schools
Last October, the NAACP National Board passed a resolution calling for a moratorium on the expansion of charter schools.  The resolution drew the ire of the charter community, both before the Board’s vote and afterwards.  In response, the NAACP’s Task Force on Quality Education for African American Children is holding a series of 7 public town halls around the country over the next few months, to hear from parents, students and community members about their priorities for quality education.

The first town hall was held in Connecticut on December 3, and attracted over 300 participants.  Additional town halls are scheduled for Memphis (January 10), Orlando (January 26), California (City TBD, Date: February 9), New York (February 15) and New Orleans and Detroit (dates TBD).  If you live in one of these cities, please stand by for additional information.  AROS will be helping to encourage turn-out and support witnesses.

Follow the Alliance to Reclaim our Schools on Facebook and Twitter and learn more at