The People's Education Convention, Washington, D.C., Aug. 3-5
This is the last in my three reports on The People’s Convention in Washington, D.C., convened by Save Our Schools March: www.saveourschoolsmarch.org, a nationwide education activist organization dedicated to save our public schools.
During the three days, there was a beehive of activity, no minute wasted. There were keynotes, workshops, principle writing groups, huddled lunches, debates over dinner, regional enclaves, drinks and discussions, hallway talk and between workshops note sharing. So much knowledge, so much to share…
We are also trying to make Save Our Schools a more viable movement/organization with better means to reach out, educate and activate concerned educators and community activists across the country.
While the intent, to strengthen the foundation first built in 2010-2011, differed from that of last years massive March and Rally, the result was similar. The gathering fueled the fire in a fight to Preserve and Transform Public Education.
Keynote Speakers Jonathan Kozol and Nancy Carlsson Paige each expressed their sentiments aloud. Each felt inspired. Kozol mused while the travel was physically tiring, he was energized. The people, the conversations, the connections, all moved him. Nancy reflected, "The convention gave me hope. Thank you everyone. It was an uplifting experience, we won't be stopped." Indeed, the People Convention experienced was powerfully phenomenal.
Deborah Meier was encouraged. She reflected on the hills we climbed and the precipice we stand on now.
Shanta Driver brought convention-goers to their feet in applause, when she spoke of education as the "new civil rights movement." Through anecdotes, Driver shared she found inspiration through activism, students and Save Our Schools activism.
Rose Sanders both closed the 2012 convention and opened the door to opportunities. She spoke of how current corporate education reforms are pernicious attacks against our precious children. Inspired by Gideon, Faya Rose Sanders reminded an expectant and eager Save Our Schools audience that strength is not always found in numbers. Small as we are, we can move masses, and so the People's Education Convention did.
A flash mob came up after Nancy Carlsson's Paige speech and sang a parody of The Great Pretender. Thought you might like to see it.
We are ALL VOLUNTEERS in SOS so I hope you can appreciate and truly understand the scope of what we’ve accomplished so far and where we're headed. It is no small task so we can always use a hand raising the building, opening the bridge above the rising tide, bringing our kids to higher ground before the tsunami of corporatized education drowns us all.
I welcome comments, criticism and debate-or if you’d like to join our organization and cause, let me know at my email adrress below. Let us know what you think. Together, we sounded the alarm, created a new paradigm, and hope someone is listening to us-and caring.
New Jersey Coordinator firstname.lastname@example.org
Save Our Schools March: www.saveourschoolsmarch.org