Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Karen Wolfe: Making Education Great Again - a rally in the Valley

Making Education Great Again - a rally in the Valley:

"Making education great again!"

Oh, edu-friends! Sometimes I can hardly keep a straight face at the forces trying to destroy public education. So, this time, I didn't even try. I hope you'll laugh, too

I wish you could have been in LA LA Land with me last weekend! I made a video for you in case you missed the charter rally in the valley!

Now that headlines from across the nation, of the NAACP, Black Lives Matter, the Network for Public Education, and the ACLU have all made clear—and John Oliver made hilarious—that the charter emperor has no clothes, the California charter lobby took its carnival to its favorite corporate reform playground, Los Angeles. Pacoima to be exact. The last bastion of that little inconvenience of democracy, the largest school district in the country that still holds school board elections, LAUSD.
Edu-friends, I thought I had stumbled into a Trump rally. It really made me feel like these folks are our only chance at making education great again.

“When I say ‘parent’ you say ‘power’!” Corporate reform champion and LAUSD board member Monica Garcia shouted.

There were t-shirts with catchy phrases like “Fierce Learner”. Although I don’t know who let the guy slip in with an off-message t-shirt that read, “Public education is not for sale”. Ha!

There were t-shirts with metaphors like Phoenix! I could almost smell the smoke rising from the ashes. Although, let’s face it, that might have been the fresh aroma of bull****. Some hoped you’d forget they were any metaphor at all. Could the M.I.T. t-shirts actually, officially, almost be connected to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology? Oh, who cares? Details, details!

The point is, these kids have a great shot at getting into a school like that because they received extra credit for attending this rally! Several of them told me so.

There were other ways to tell this was no ordinary rally. It was literally on—wait for it—AstroTurf! That’s right, edu-friends. Mere grass isn’t good enough for these disrupters!

It was like a carnival!

Just listen to this charter school principal shriek--I mean lead-- the crowd.

“You have MORE accountability for MORE student learning! Can we do it? YES WE CAN! YES WE CAN! SI, SE PUEDES [sic],” she cheered.

Only 5% of California’s students attend charters, but this rally looked like the whole world had descended to celebrate charters! They boasted 3000 attendees. The cop I asked estimated 900-1000.

So how did these folks get here? Nothing is left to chance by the charter lobby. They had buses! But it was billed as a march, so a march it will be! Buses Making Education Great Again - a rally in the Valley:

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