Why Teachers Must Become Community Organizers and Justice Fighters

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Mark Naison: Teacher Activists must put forth a vision of Radical Democracy which envisions an education which empowers students as critical thinkers and agents of historical change, not just as obedient test takers and which envisions schools playing a central role in neighborhoods united and mobilized to get a fair share of the nation’s resources.

The Port of Oakland Statement

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Scott Prosterman: Our crappy education system isn’t even producing effective radicals these days. Where is Saul Alinsky when you need him? Has anyone read “Rules for Radicals” lately?

Ken Brown, El Camino College District, Trustee

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Sharon Kyle: I want to press upon my friends in Los Angeles to vote for Ken Brown — Board of Trustees seat for El Camino Community College Board.

Class Warfare: Is It Real? Is It Over? Or Has It Just Begun?

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Charles Hayes: Now in my seventh decade, I haven’t been able to rid myself of the unrelenting impression that America as a land of opportunity is, for an ever-increasing percentage of our population, a losing proposition.

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Occupy LAUSD — Again!

occupy lausd

On Saturday, October 22, at 4:30 p.m., teachers from across California will walk from the California Teachers Association (CTA) conference at the Bonaventure Hotel to speak and rally at the site of the Occupy LAUSD encampment in front of LAUSD headquarters.

Hundreds March for Occupy LAUSD

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Marcy Winograd: Let our schools serve the 99% of students, parents, and teachers, not the 1% of billionaires. Protect and empower public education.

Friday Feedback: “LAUSD’s Apartheid Hall of Shame (Part One)”

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Friday Feedback: This week, Sylvia Pardo comments on Sikivu Hutchinson’s article, “LAUSD’s Apartheid Hall of Shame (Part One),” and Sharon Kyle responds.

It Ain’t the Teachers Nor the Administrators!

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Steve Ybarra: Everyone questions why little Johnny and Joanie can’t read. Some say the problem is with the teachers. No one wants to talk about where the problem really resides — and that is with the school district system.

Perry: Tejanos and Education Policy

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Victoria DeFrancesco Soto: Governor Perry’s lack of funding for education this year and in those previous ones are the big picture of where he stand with education and Latino in particular.

No Money to Fix Public Education

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Leonard Isenberg: Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights Russlynn Ali tried the impossible task of trying to reconcile her optimism with her equally honest assessment that there was not only no money to fix public education, but even less in the future.

A.J. Duffy: Truly a Man for All Seasons

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Leonard Isenberg: It is the ultimate chutzpah for LAUSD to now laud the supposed achievements of its students, while turning a blind eye to the corruption that tries to sell this fraudulent result to the people of Los Angeles.

School Reform Grudge Match: Diane Ravitch vs. Steven Brill

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David A. Walsh: Sure, Ravitch may “cherry-pick” her facts and sound like the tobacco companies, and Brill may be a defamatory admirer of Joel Klein, bosom buddy to Rupert Murdoch, but at least those are creative attacks.

Blacks and Latinos Will Suffer When the Student Debt Bubble Bursts

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David Love: There is every indication that the bursting of the student debt bubble, like the housing bubble before it, is imminent. And when it happens, it will send shockwaves throughout the financial markets. People of color will be especially vulnerable.

Anti-Teacher Union “Reformers” Hoisted on Own Petard

michelle rhee

Randy Shaw: After years of teachers union bashing and corporate-led school “reform” efforts, anti-public school forces are now on the defensive. And the main reason is that the statistical measurements do not support their arguments, and even show a pattern of falsification.

Hispanics Aspire to Better Education

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Pilar Marrero: When it comes to seeking solutions for problems related to education and the low high school graduation rate, Latino voters are not so attached to ideological solutions (read: liberal or conservative) and freely choose from both options, sometimes in contradictory ways.

A Punishing Educational Curriculum

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Walter Brasch: Colleges have stayed ahead of the Recession by becoming business models, where students are “inventory units,” and success is based upon escalating profit.

Bringing Teach for America Back to Its Roots

Mark Naison: It behooves us, as progressive organizers and justice fighters, to keep the lines of communication open to people in these organizations, and be there to work with them if they join us in resistance to policies that concentrate economic sacrifice amongst America’s poor.

It Takes Strength to Compromise — and It Costs Less, Too

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Tanya Acker: There is a lot of discussion these days about the detriments of compromise. When you compromise, for instance, certain people may claim you don’t stick to your guns and decide not to vote for you.

Cuts to Higher Education Shortchange California’s Future

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Caitlin Vega: How is it that we cannot reward kids who have done everything right, overcome tremendous hardship, and beat the odds with a decent and affordable education?

Microaggressions and Stereotype Threat

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Jessie Daniels: Our prevailing mythology of meritocracy in the U.S. tells us that education is a path to achievement. To do provide that, we expect schools to be free from racism and provide an equal education to all.

Racism in K-12 Public Schools

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Jessie Daniels: The clever, sinister thing about institutional racism in education is that it operates relentlessly on its own, like a machine, even when people of good will want it to operate differently.

The National Education Association Flunks a Crucial Test

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Ann Robertson and Bill Leumer: As long as the N.E.A. as well as organized labor in general remain tied to the corporate-dominated Democratic Party, public education will deteriorate, critical thinking will be undermined, wages will remain low, and the working class will continue to suffer a decline.

Keeping Public Schools Public

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Craig Williams: As progressives, we should also argue that educators need more funding just to deal with the increased poverty created in large part by the private sector.

Let the Teachers Teach

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Jim Cullen: For me the most compelling questions in terms of improving historical literacy turn less on what we want students to know—I have no serious disagreement with what I see here—than how we can help them know it.

Rick Perry’s War on Higher Ed in Texas

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John Willingham: Rick Perry is waging a quiet war against our current system of higher education, which makes him a lot like some previous governors. He may win, but we’ll lose.

Charter Schools Are Missing in Action

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Mark Naison: Both directly and indirectly, Charter Schools send the message that all that is of value exists outside of your community, brought in by missionary teachers and administrators.

Why Obama Must Replace Arne Duncan

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Mark Naison: Today, America’s teachers are so disillusioned with the Obama administration that their participation in the 2012 is a big question mark.

George Carlin Understood Why LAUSD Does Not Educate

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Leonard Isenberg: George Carlin puts it rather succinctly when he says, “They don’t want a population of citizens capable of critical thinking.”

Money Trail in Education Reform Leads to Everyone But Those Who Need It Most

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Mark Naison: While people are losing their homes, jobs, and medical coverage, new school professionals are flooding communities with programs that have offer little to the people they were allegedly designed to benefit.

A Few Cutting Remarks

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Walter Brasch: Slagheap World Airlines announced that in the spirit of national cost cutting, it would cut back its cockpit crew to one pilot and eliminate flight attendants, meals, and life rafts. “This way,” said the president, “we won’t have to penalize our loyal stockholders by lowering our return on investment.”

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