Monday, October 03, 2016

SEA Joining in "National Day of Action"

The National Day of Action comes from a public education coalition group called The Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools.

The National Day of Action is on Thursday, October 6th.  Here's what is happening in Seattle schools:

- Wearing red
- Creating posters about what items your school community has bought in support of your school especially around back-to-school supplies
- Gathering a team from each school with 4-5 educators and parents/families
- Bringing the Poster and your school team to the closest town hall meeting that day, either at Roosevelt HS or Washington MS libraries from 4-5 pm.

SEA has confirmed several of our Seattle legislators to be in attendance for the town halls.

I think this is a terrific idea so legislators know just how much investment parents/families are making at our schools. 

Also, on September 19th, the SEA made this announcement:

Last night the Seattle Education Association rep assembly unanimously passed a resolution to support educators in a coordinated action to wear Black Lives Matter t-shirts at work on October 19th. We do this to affirm black lives in Seattle Public Schools and in support of the educators at John Muir Elementary.
I did ask the district about this and what teachers can or cannot wear to school.  Here was the reply:
We respect our teachers' rights and desire to express themselves. Teachers have first amendment rights in the classroom but this right may be limited by a school district, especially if a shirt creates a disruption to the educational environment or is profane.
Another question I had was this:
How does the district view Black Lives Matter group?  Is it a political movement? Another African-American group?   

As a district we are united in our commitment to eliminating opportunity gaps for African American students and other students of color.  
Does the District believe that teachers wearing Black Lives Matter t-shirts is the only way that teachers or SPS can "affirm black lives?" 

Affirming students happens every day in our classrooms and we are working to get better at it. This year we are focused on four key strategies: positive learning, positive beliefs, positive partnerships and positive relationships. On Sept 1 we held the first district-wide professional development day for all teachers in partnership with SEA. The focus was on building positive student-educator relationships. This was also the focus of the events at John Muir and Leshi Elementary. 
So, as you can see, the district is not really going to give a direct answer to those questions on why this particular group or method for affirming black lives.

I am going to write an thread on the larger vision I believe is happening in the district around race and equity.  I will say that the October 19th event could prove problematic for the district once the press gets involved.  

10 comments:

Anonymous said...
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Anonymous said...

I guarantee no teacher at my daughters school will wear Black Lives Matter t-shirts at school on October 19th or any other day . Thanks for the heads-up.

Milo

Anonymous said...

I do not understand why there is such a fuss about the Black Lives Matter t-shirts.

For me, the Black Lives Matter movement is about raising awareness and acknowledging that we, as a society, have some hard work to do in order for everyone to have the opportunity to fully realize the promise of the American Dream.

These are difficult discussions but we, as a community and as a country, need to figure out a way to have meaningful conversations about race, class, fear and discrimination.

-Mark

Anonymous said...

If SEA thinks I will support their next strike then they're nuts!

Why is SEA always causing problems?

Ug

Anonymous said...

The front office at LH told me teachers will NOT be allowed to wear any politically themed T-shirts and if they do they risk being suspended without pay. My daughters teacher reassured me she will not be participating in anything political while at work.

Common sense

seattle citizen said...

So no "save the whales" shirts for teachers, or "support the arts"?

Anonymous said...

I am an SPS parent and I was extremely happy to see a teacher wearing a "Black Lives Matter" t-shirt this morning. I was a little surprised because I thought the "day" for that was 10/19 but I think every day is an appropriate day for that. I sent my kids to school in red shirts to support the teachers as well. So many important causes!!

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Update...

Anonymous Dora Taylor said...

"By the way Anonymous, By Any Means Necessary, BAMN, at the time, was a group of students and teachers in Chicago fighting back against the closing of schools. As it turned out, the closing of schools, all in minority communities, was a means to gentrify black neighborhoods and create charter schools."

Ya right, first you lie and wrote you don't know BAMN then you double down and make -up a second lie about the origins of BAMN. I have the full dossier on BAMN and you and your friend Shanta Driver.

I will politely inform you that both you and your partner are on record as being associated with a hate group BAMN. BAMN recruits street kids to commit felony assault against anyone who opposes BAMN's progressive agenda. I assume your comment that you're now going to get involved means getting out the word to BAMN to come to Seattle and to teach us a lesson.

Interesting how you went from innocent to full on attack mode in just a few comments. I understand you are embarrassed that I caught you in a lie and outed your association with the hate group BAMN, but you should get over it.

FYI