Socialist Alternative Leaflet Distributed at the Mass Protest in Chicago March 27
Fight School Closures!
Escalate Mass Resistance!
Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s appointed Board of Education wants to close 54 schools, force 6 more into turnarounds and consolidate another 11, affecting tens of thousands of students. All are located in economically disadvantaged districts, overwhelmingly communities of color. When the announcement was made, the multi-millionaire Mayor was out of town on a ski trip.
These attacks are the latest round in a bigger war, waged by Chicago’s political and financial elite against our communities. Many of the attacks on teachers and K-12 students began under the reign of Arne Duncan, now President Obama’s Secretary of Education. The Chicago Teacher’s Union stood up to these attacks in last year’s historic strike, but as everyone involved already knew, that was only one battle in the fight to defend public education and our communities.
They are also part of a world-wide process of corporate politicians dismantling and privatizing public education and social services. Basic services and education are increasingly out of reach for already-struggling families, deepening the existing, brutal inequality. The attacks on teachers’ unions, who have fought to defend public education, is a decisive part of this process, as is the unrelenting push towards charter schools.
What will it take to put a stop to these attacks on public education? Recent history shows that each wave of attacks requires unions and the community to step up with new tactics and take the struggle to a higher level. Jackson Potter’s call on behalf of the CTU for escalating mass actions and non-violent civil disobedience such as occupations of schools and the Mayor’s office points in the right direction. Other trade unionists, community activists, parents and students must become involved in the planning of this program of resistance.
The movement must also organize mass protest marches and rallies that demand the city’s aldermen take a firm stand against school closures and other attacks on public education.
This is now becoming a political struggle with the entire Chicago establishment. We must begin to organize politically by taking Union money out of the abusive relationship with the Democratic Party. We need to prepare to form a party for working people.
Socialist Alternative Public Meeting to discuss the way forward in the struggle against school closures
Thursday April 4th, 6:00PM
UE Hall, 37 S Ashland, Chicago 60607
Stop all school closures!
End the disaster of Mayoral control. The school board should be accountable to ordinary people, not the city establishment of the Democratic Party elite.
End all cuts to public education and social programs. Full funding for quality education, transit and other services. Tax corporations and the super-wealthy!