A large national alliance of civil rights organizations has joined under the umbrella heading of “Journey for Justice.”
This coalition has called for the resignation of Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
To understand why, read the flyer it distributed.
Anyone who thinks that closing public schools and replacing them with privately managed charters and with vouchers is somehow part of the civil rights movement has no understanding of the purposes of the civil rights movement.
It was not to destroy the public sector but to assure access to good education, decent housing, and jobs without any racial discrimination.
It struggled for equality of educational opportunity, not privatization or a “race to the top.”.
It did not claim that poverty could be cured by “fixing” schools or privatizing them.
It demanded an end to poverty by creating jobs and justice.
It fought segregation in schools and housing.
That vision is not the vision of the corporate reform movement in education today.
It fights not for equality of opportunity but for a market-based system of winners and losers.
It accepts segregation as tolerable.
It is not a civil rights movement.
The Journey for Justice calls out these contradictions and speaks truth to power.
“A National Grassroots Education Alliance”
Alliance for Education Justice
Kenwood Oakland Community Organization
Baltimore Algebra Project
Keep the Vote, No Takeover
Black Parents for Quality Education
Parents United for Local School Education
New York, NY
Alliance for Quality Education
Urban Youth Collaborative
Philadelphia Student Union
Leadership Center for the Common Good
Oakland Public Education Network
Los Angeles, CA
Labor Community Strategy Center
Kansas Justice Advocates
New Orleans, LA
Concerned Conscious Citizens Controlling Community Changes
Coalition for Community Schools
Boston Youth Organizing Project
Boston Parent Organizing Network
Detroit LIFE Coalition
Neighborhoods Organizing for Change
Fannie Lou Hamer Center for Change
Camden Education Association
Citizens for Public Education
Jersey City, NJ
Parent Advocates for Children’s Education
Concerned Citizens Coalition
Paterson Education Organizing Committee
Youth United for Change
Annenberg Institute for School Reform
Teachers for Social Justice
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
Laurie R. Glenn
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
THURSDAY, AUGUST 22, 2013
25 CITIES KICK OFF NATIONAL CAMPAIGN CALLING FOR RESIGNATION OF U.S. SECRETARY OF EDUCATION DUNCAN
Journey for Justice Demonstrations Spearhead Campaign To Restore United Nations’ Proclaimed Human Right To Education
WHAT: In light of a rash of school closings targeting low income communities of color in cities throughout the country, a national 25-city coalition is calling for U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s resignation. In the midst of the 50th anniversary for the March On Washington, which sought to end segregation and job discrimination, members of the Journey for Justice Alliance have banded together to fight the continued privatization of public schools under Secretary Duncan’s leadership.
Students, parents and advocacy representatives all over the country will come together in local actions to demand a stop to the destabilization of low-income communities of color and restore the human and civil right to a quality and safe education for all children.
National Journey for Justice Alliance demands include:
- · Moratorium on school closings, turnarounds, phase-outs, and charter expansions.
- · It’s proposal for sustainable school transformation to replace failed, market-driven interventions as support for struggling schools.
- · Resignation of U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan.
WHO/WHERE: Journey for Justice members and groups will hold local actions in 25 cities across the country including: Oakland, Calif.; San Jose, Calif.; Los Angeles; Hartford, Conn.; District of Columbia; Atlanta; Miami; Chicago; Wichita, Kan.; New Orleans; Baltimore; Minneapolis; Camden, N.J.; Englewood, N.J.; Paterson, N.J.; Jersey City, N.J.; Newark; New York; North Carolina, Boston; Detroit; Eupora, Miss.; Jackson, Miss.; Philadelphia; South Carolina.
WHEN: Events will be held Monday, August 27th – Thursday, August 29th, 2013
WHY: A clear pattern of racial and economic discrimination documented by the Annenberg Institute for School Reform has demonstrated that while there have been advances in the nation, as shown by the election of the nation’s first black president, the federal administration’s policies have embodied education strategies that continue to perpetuate racial and class bias and support inequality in education.
Despite research showing that closing public schools does not improve test scores or graduation rates, the federal agenda has incentivized the privatization of schools with primary fall out on low-income communities of color. Explosive school closings resulting from this agenda violates the United Nations proclamation of 1948, Article 26 (http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml) establishing the inalienable human right of every child – regardless of race, income or community — to receive a quality education in a safe environment.
JOURNEY FOR JUSTICE ALLIANCE
Journey for Justice is a national grassroots alliance whose goal is to bring the voice of those directly impacted by discriminatory school actions into the debate about the direction for public education in the 21st century and to promote equality in education for all students and sustainable, community-driven school reform for all school districts across the country.