is a special action alert. Please read below about the developing
situation in Chicago. It is time to support the students, parents and
Chicago School Closings Demand a Response
announced plans to close 53 schools. Philadelphia will close 23.
New York City has 22 on the hit list. Atlanta is planning to close
13. Sacramento will close seven. Last year Oakland closed
five. These are not the first closings. New York City has closed
more than 100 schools in recent years, including some of the new
schools that opened to replace so-called failing schools.
all have certain things in common. Their students
are predominantly minority students who live in poverty. These
schools are anchors in their communities, and they are
being abandoned by city leaders in the name of thrift and
We are told
there is no money to support our schools. Paradoxical. The same
reformers who tell us education is the ONLY way to
overcome systemic poverty also tell us no money can be found to
pay for high quality public schools for all. At a time when the
stock market and corporate profits are at all time highs, we
have no money for our schools, and their chief strategies are only
about cutting costs.
We have a
different vision of what must be done in our cities.
Schools should be the center of reinvestment in our local
communities. If they are underutilized, put them to work giving
adults access to technology and training opportunities. Make
them vibrant centers of creative industry. Rather than
scattering students to the four winds, bring them together
in well-equipped, functional schools that serve all their needs.
Connect them to projects rebuilding and strengthening their communities.
Stop pursuing test preparation as if these scores are meaningful
indicators of school quality.
Members of our
Network are among those who plan to be arrested in
civil disobedience on Wednesday. We stand with the students of
Chicago, Philadelphia and all the cities across the country
facing unjust school closures.