Still Separate, Still Unequal
In this post I wish to share an insightful Vimeo presentation on the political and ideological reasons for the onslaught against public education by Brian Jones, a teacher in NYC who has been one of the leading voices against corporate charters and the attacks on teachers and their unions. I specify "corporate charter" to differentiate from the schools in NYC, like Central Park East, which are alternative schools within the public system. N Alexander wrote the text below. -- Saulo Colon
Still Separate, Still Unequal: Structural Racism, Class Reproduction and The Attack on Public Education, with Teacher-Activist Brian Jones
Public education for all is under an unprecedented attack. The powerful venture capitalists and right-wing foundations who want to privatize and make profits off of our public schools are using many different means: charter schools, mayoral control, high stakes standardized testing, school closures, merit pay and attacking teacher unions are all a part of this coordinated and ideological assault.
Often, these "reformers" claim that the sweeping changes they want will bring genuine educational justice for communities that have long been underserved -- especially for poor and working-class African American and Latino families.
But will privatization actually create racial and economic justice for these families and their communities? Will these "reforms" strengthen the educational rights and capacities of students and parents, or weaken them? Will turning education over to the profit-motive "free market" lead to less segregated schools, or more so? Who is behind the effort to privatize education and why are they pursuing these changes?
Is there an alternative way to reform and better our public schools?
These and other urgent questions concerning education and democracy are discussed by NYC public school teacher and activist, Brian Jones.
Brian Jones is a teacher, actor, and activist in New York City. He is the co-narrator of the film, The Inconvenient Truth Behind Waiting for Superman, and a contributing author to the book Education and Capitalism: Struggles for Learning and Liberation (Haymarket Books).