PCAPS to mark 60th anniversary of landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision with rally, march, picnic, and canvass in support of good schools and good jobs

Media Advisory

For Immediate Release

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Ron Whitehorne, 215-779-2672, ronw292@gmail.com

Jesse Kudler, 617-974-3684, jesse@fightforphilly.org

PCAPS to mark 60th anniversary of landmark Brown v. Board of Education decision with rally, march, picnic, and canvass in support of good schools and good jobs
Parents, students, teachers, and activists will demand full and equal funding for schools, spread the word about wage expansion ballot question and movement to abolish School Reform Commission

Event is part of national week of action

WHO:

PCAPS public school parents, teachers, students, activists, and supporters; Rep. Jim Roebuck, PFT President Jerry Jordan, Steel Elementary parent Kendra Brooks, Students from Philadelphia Student Union and Youth United for Change, SEIU 32BJ Area Leader Daisy Cruz, American Federation of Teachers PA President Ted Kirsch

WHAT:

Rally, march, picnic, and canvass for good jobs and good schools for 60th anniversary of Brown V. Board of Education

WHEN:

Saturday, May 17, 10am,  rain or shine

WHERE:

Bryant Elementary , 61st and Cedar Ave.

VISUAL:

Diverse crowd of students and parents, speakers, petitions

PhiladelphiaOn Saturday, the Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for public schools will observe the 60th anniversary of the landmark Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision, which declared state laws establishing segregated public schools unconstitutional.  The event is part of a national week of action, “Fulfilling the Promise of Brown v. Board: Organizing for Educational Justice For All.”  Ralliers will call for our policymakers to recommit to the vision of equity and opportunity embodied in that U.S. Supreme Court decision.  Public education is under attack, and separate and unequal remains the reality for our communities. 

In the past, parents, students and teachers have been pitted against one another. Now, they are taking a stand together.  Parents, students, educators and community residents will rally and march at Bryant Elementary to demand full funding for schools, the end of the state-controlled School Reform Commission in favor of a locally-controlled school board, and the end of the school-to-prison pipeline.  Elected officials, labor leaders, parents, and students will talk about what we can do to fulfill the promise of true school desegregation and equal resources.

Like so many city public schools, Bryant has been devastated by budget cuts that have left it without a nurse on duty at all times. Governor Corbett and his allies have cut funding to the bone, putting our children at risk for educational failure and worse.

Activists will canvass the neighborhood collecting signatures on a petition to enact a Philadelphia ballot question demanding the end of the School Reform Commission and a return to local control. 

The market approach to education – closing schools, charter expansion, over-testing and harsh discipline – has de-stabilized entire neighborhoods, particularly in low-income communities of color.   Ending inequality is impossible without attacking poverty and challenging corporate power. Canvassers will also support the struggle to raise the minimum wage and improve the living conditions of working families in Philadelphia.  They will urge voters to support “Yes on One” for Tuesday’s Ballot Question to give a raise to thousands of city subcontractors at the airport and elsewhere.

The event will conclude with a celebratory picnic.

The five-point PCAPS education plan:

  • A fair funding formula that will distribute state dollars based on student needs and the local district’s ability to pay, not political fights.
  • More revenue for education and human services by closing corporate tax loopholes, taxing natural gas production, and cancelling prison expansion.
  • Holding charter schools accountable and giving local districts the power to monitor them.
  • Shutting down the school to prison pipeline. Replace harsh, zero tolerance policies that criminalize students for minor offenses with restorative justice.
  • Abolishing the School Reform Commission and returning our schools to local control.

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PCAPS is a coalition of students, parents, and teachers with an unwavering commitment to improving Philadelphia’s school system. Members of the coalition include ACTION United, American Federation of Teachers PA, AFL-CIO Central Labor Council Fight For Philly, Jewish Labor Committee, Jobs With Justice, JUNTOS, Media Mobilizing Project, Neighborhood Networks, Occupy Philadelphia Labor Work Group, Philadelphians Allied for a Responsible Economy(PHARE), Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, Philadelphia Home and School Council, Philadelphia Student Union, SEIU 32BJ, UNITE HERE, Youth United for Change.

http://www.wearepcaps.org

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