Let’s Form a Movement!

Folks, I think this is very much worthwhile. Please read and consider joining a movement against the Deforming of public education in America. TeacherKen (Kenneth Bernstein) has possibly the very best blog on education out there (certainly a lot better analysis than mine).

—– Forwarded Message —-
From: Kenneth Bernstein <kber@earthlink.net>

You may have heard by now that teachers and families from across the country will be standing together to resist the terrible attacks on our schools this July 28-31 in Washington, DC by attending and supporting the “Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action.” A major public rally and march will be held on July 30th, with workshops, speakers and educational events being held throughout the four day event. Regional and local events are being scheduled nationwide to coincide with the main event in Washington, DC.

We believe that our public school system is vital to the future of our children and a democratic society. Toward that end, we are rallying to demand an end to destructive policies that have eroded public confidence in our public schools,
demoralized our nation’s best and brightest teachers, and reduced the education of our children to narrow and mind-numbing test preparation. We believe that our students, teachers, families and society deserve a fully funded, world class public education and we hold our government accountable for providing us with the means to achieve it! We therefore demand:

· Equitable funding for all public school communities
· End to high stakes testing for student, teacher, and school evaluation

· Teacher and community leadership in forming public education policies
· Curriculum developed for and by local school communities

(*The full demands are attached to this letter.)
Many people and organizations are working to make the “Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action a momentous event. Among those on the planning committee are educators, parents and concerned citizens including Bess Altwerger, Ken Bernstein, Anthony Cody, Katherine Cox, Conny Jensen, Rick Meyer, Laurie Murphy, Jesse Turner and Victoria Young. Our growing list of nationally prominent endorsers include Diane Ravitch, Deborah Meier, Alfie Kohn, Marion Brady, Susan Ohanian, Stephen Krashen, and Vicki Abeles.

We are asking you to add your personal and/or organizational endorsement to this national mobilization to defend public education. As with all actions of this magnitude and importance, its success will also depend on the personal and institutional contributions of its supporters. Can we count on you to lend your endorsement and support?

Join our Facebook “cause” group, Save Our Schools: March and National Call to Action at http://www.causes.com/causes/556335 . Together, we can build a better future for our children!

For the future of our children, we demand the following…

  • Equitable funding for all public school communities
  • Equitable funding across all public schools and school systems
  • Full public funding of family and community support services
  • Full funding for 21st century school and neighborhood libraries
  • End to economically and racially re-segregated schools
  • End to high stakes testing for student, teacher, and school evaluation
  • Multiple and varied assessments to evaluate students, teachers and schools
  • No pay per test performance for teachers and administrators
  • End to public school closures based upon test performance
  • Curriculum developed for and by local school communities
  • Support teacher and student access to a wide-range of instructional programs and technologies
  • Well-rounded education that develops every students’ intellectual, creative, and physical potential
  • Opportunities for multicultural/multilingual curriculum for all students
  • Small class sizes that foster caring, democratic learning communities
  • Teacher, family and community leadership in forming public education policies
  • Educator and civic community leadership in drafting of new ESEA legislation
  • Federal support for local school programs free of punitive and competitive funding
  • End political and corporate control of curriculum, instruction and assessment decisions


Next, here is a list of those who have already agreed to support us:

  • Susan Ohanian
  • Stephen Krashen
  • Marion Brady
  • Alfie Kohn
  • Amy Valens
  • Herb Kohl
  • Ken & Yetta Goodman
  • Joanne Yatvin
  • Vicki Abeles, producer of “Race to Nowhere”
  • Deborah Meier Research Prof., Steinhardt School of Education, NYU; also a Convener of Forum for Education and Democracy
  • Yong Zhao Professor, Michigan State U
  • Monty Neill Acting Executive Director of Fairtest, Chair Forum for Educational Accountability
  • FairTest
  • David C. Berliner Emeritus Regents Professor, ASU, former President of AERA
  • Renee Moore former MS TOY, on board of things like NBPTS
  • Betty Olson Jones President of the Oakland Education Association
  • CELT
  • Bill Bigelow of Rethinking Schools
  • Bob Peterson of Rethinking Schools
  • Teachers’ Letters to Obama
  • Children are More Than Test Scores
  • Jan Resseger Public Minister, UCC, Chair of NCC panel on Public Education


Now a few final comments from me [that is, from Ken Bernstein]

As of this morning Facebook shows over 1,700 supporting our Cause

We have space reserved at American University for the conference portion for this event

We have a professional organizer who has done similar kinds of event for non-profits working with us

Diane Ravitch has agreed to address the gathering

We are working on more endorsements and support.

We hope that those of you receiving this email will be willing to do several things

1. Sign on to support the cause

2. Agree to allow your names to be used as endorsers – you can do so by return email. Please let me know how you would like to be identified

3. Seek to get organizations with which you might be associated to support this effort

4. Reach out to others that you know who might be willing to add their support.

Thanks in advance for whatever you can do
Kenneth J. Bernstein

Published in: on January 9, 2011 at 6:52 pm  Comments (3)  

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3 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. Unfortunately if NCLB is re-authorized in April or May, July will be too late to do anything about public education, especially if the Obama blueprint goes through as is or close to as is.


  2. Is there a website for the movement? If not, there should be!


    • Well, there is that Facebook page, but not a regular web page.


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