Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Pedro Noguera lists his reasons for joining the Save Our Schools March in D.C.

With states around the nation cutting education budgets and growing concern about the state of America’s public education system, this month’s Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action in Washington, D.C., promises to be a powerful gathering of teachers, parents, students and advocates.

Among those planning to participate is Pedro A. Noguera, Executive Director of the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education, who says he’s marching to defend public education because, “without it, American democracy is in danger."

Dr. Noguera has many other reasons why he is attending the march, which he shared with the National Opportunity to Learn Campaign. Here they are:

I am supporting the march because I am tired of seeing teachers scapegoated for the problems facing public schools.

I'm tired of seeing poor communities lose control of their schools in the name of reform.

I'm tired of seeing reformers who have no long-term commitment to the communities that hire them, close schools and treat parents and teachers with total disregard.

I'm tired of politicians who claim that money is not an issue in public education at time when teachers are being laid off, class sizes are growing and basic learning materials are in short supply.

I'm tired of seeing education reduced to preparation for a standardized tests and teachers being reduced to test proctors.

I'm marching because I was hoping that the Obama administration would deliver a change of course in education and instead we've gotten too much continuity.

I'm marching to defend public education because without it American democracy is in danger.

The July 30 rally is scheduled for 12 p.m. at the Ellipse. Organizers suggest arriving early to enjoy performances and other planned activities.

At noon, Diane Ravitch, Jonathan Kozol, José Vilson, Deborah Meier, Monty Neill, and other speakers, musicians and performance poets will “encourage, educate, and support this movement and the Save Our Schools March demands,” according to organizers. At 1:30 p.m., participants will march to the White House to read the SOS demands and call for continued action to reclaim schools as places of learning, joy and democracy.

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