The disintegration of public education can be felt in these school based issues:
- the misuse and over reliance on high stakes standardized testing
- crippling defunding and loss of valuable programs
- targeting of veteran educators and top down control over pedagogy.
These conditions have directly impacted our daily lives and our students. Where natural disasters could not take down entire school districts as they did in New Orleans and Puerto Rico, man-made ones are initiated and funded by corporate reformers and elected officials. The most disproportionate impact has been on our schools located in predominantly Black and Brown communities.
We face a harsh reality. New York City is the most segregated school system in the nation. School failure labels and turnaround programs are features of the institutionally racist policies of corporate education reform. Disproportionately, schools in high poverty and Black and Brown communities have faced take over, reallocation of funding to outside consulting agencies and controlled curriculum, while engaging student programming have been cut. Educators and students in these communities feel insurmountable pressures to overcome inequalities they never created in the first place.
We continue to disproportionately suspend and implement harsh disciplinary actions on Black and Brown students.
We are in a pivotal moment to take our experiences with our students and elevate their voices. To this end, MORE voted in October to join a national network of grassroots educator groups, including Working Educators (WE) in Philadelphia, Social Equality Educators (SEE) in Seattle, and others for a weeklong Black Lives Matter Week of Action. In NYC, several MORE members have been involved in the general planning alongside folks from various grassroots organizations and individuals from schools across the city.
The Week of Action
Week of Action: Calendar of Events (still be added to!)