Putting aside the total ‘ick factor’ of union aligned groups pushing a national agenda by convincing kids to walk out of school, there is an even more important concern that has to be front and center when thousands of students ignore a school directive and decide to leave their respective campuses: Student Safety.
Angry parents spent the weekend on Twitter convincing students from all over Boston to leave school and head to The Boston Common with zero regard for who’d be responsible for them and what would happen if, God forbid, something were to happen to one of them at a time that they were supposed to be in the care of the Boston Public Schools.
Would those who know better still keep saying the whole thing was student driven if a student had been struck by a car on the trek to the Boston Common? Or would the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools step in and admit that this event was one piece of a national and organized strategy sweeping across more than thirty American cities including New Orleans, Chicago, and New York.
The following is taken word for word from their website:
Storming in Boston! Support the ThunderclapIt’s time to throw down for public education in MA and across the country. The Massachusetts Education Justice Alliance (MEJA) and the Boston Education Justice Alliance (BEJA) are building a mass mobilization for Monday, March 7 to #keepthecap on charter schools and to demand full funding for all students in Massachusetts. Actions include turn-out and testimony at the State House on Monday morning, a student walk-out across all Boston Public Schools, and a protest against planned budget cuts at a School Committee budget hearing that evening. More details on the March 7 event here. You can help amplify the work of our partners at MEJA/BEJA by joining their Thunderclap social media action – sign up here today!
If I were a Boston student being told by adults that my Mayor didn’t care about me or my schools, I’d be upset and want to speak up.
If I were a Boston student athlete being told by adults that my team was going to be be cut, I’d be upset and want to fight to save my team.
If I were a Boston student being told that charter schools were bad and were the reason I wouldn’t be able to get into the college of my dreams, I’d probably start to dislike charter schools, whether I knew what a charter school was or not.
Students should be meeting with BPS leadership. And they are. Superintendent Tommy Chang meets regularly with the Boston Student Advisory Council and in light of the recent turmoil around race, they’ve met more frequently.
Students have every right to know what is happening with the school budget, to raise their voices in protest, and to be part of the conversation with educators, school leaders, and city leaders. But they also have every right to accurate and honest information that will not intentionally pit them against organizations and people that a bunch of grown ups see as the enemy.
Perhaps the only positive that comes out of 3,500 students missing school at the behest of big labor is that it provides an opportunity to consider more and better ways for student representatives to be part of the conversation.
But let’s respect them enough to tell them the truth about reductions in Title 1 funds and decreased state aid instead of feeding them a host of talking points that oversimplify and misconstrue a very complex issue.
We are the adults. Let’s start acting like it.
Note: This blog was updated to include language directly from the National Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools website.