Hundreds of parents, teachers, students, and community activists rallied this afternoon to honor the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and call for justice in Chicago’s public education system.
“From his jail cell in Birmingham, Dr. King wrote about how we are tied together,” said Gloria Warner, Action Now President and retired CPS teacher of 23 years. “The injustice being done to our kids, through the closing of 50 schools, opening more corrupt charter schools, divesting from our neighborhood schools, and keeping democracy away from the school board affects all of us.”
The rally, held at Operation PUSH Coalition Headquarters, demanded a school board that is accountable to voters and truly represents the student population of CPS. A coalition of community organizations comprise the Grassroots Education Movement (GEM) were pivotal in placing the Elected Representative School Board referendum on the ballot in 37 wards.
“Privatization through charter schools and turnarounds has been proven to increase segregation,” continued Warner. “It is 2015, but our schools are as separate and unequal as ever. Black and Latino children on the South and West sides are prevented from receiving the same resources that white children get in the better funded public schools on the northside.”
GEM organizers announced a new campaign entitled, “Fight for 50,” a push for sustainable investments in 50 neighborhood schools around the city. Dr. King fought against a segregated school system and sought the proper funding for public education systems.
What the video to listen to Gloria Warner's entire speech.