Thousands of parents, students, teachers and education advocates gathered in Washington, D.C., on July 30 to stand up for public education and send the message that the nation’s public schools are the cornerstone of our democracy. Speaker after speaker at the “Save Our Schools” march and rally called for less teacher bashing, less emphasis on standardized tests and more support for education reforms that work, such as smaller class sizes and improved teacher preparation.
AFTNJ Treasurer and Newark Teachers Union member Joe Amabile braved the heat to lead the federation’s delegation. Amabile came back with photos, links to videos and a renewed vigor for organizing to build teacher and public awareness of what really works. See Amabile’s photos with videos of leading education theorists Diane Ravitch and Jonathon Kozol, educators and even Matt Damon at http://aftnj.org/photos/073011dc/ .
At a solidarity event held in Millburn, Montclair State University Adjunct Local President Bob Russo spoke in support of the charter school referendum bill, which would require that local districts vote before charter schools are approved.
“I was there representing AFT Local 6025 and as an AFTNJ Vice President,” said Russo. “But I am also as a former Montclair Mayor opposing the charter school the Governor wants us to accept in Montclair.”