The week is coming to an end and it's time to do a little review. Two teachers and two students from Jamaica attended the Joint Public Hearing at Norman Thomas in Manhattan on Monday. I was able to speak in defense of that school.
On Tuesday night, my wife, my mother in law, about seven teachers from Jamaica and another student went to Campus Magnet in support of our friends at BCEA High School there. Calvin Whitfield from Jamaica spoke, one of our students took the floor and I had to follow my wife Camille who was excellent.
On Wednesday evening, five teachers from Jamaica, a counselor and two students were at the Citywide Council for High Schools meeting where they unanimously passed a resolution calling for a moratorium on school closings. The UFT was well represented as the Chapter Leaders attending a High School Committee meeting walked to Tweed from UFT headquarters to attend the council meeting.
Later that night I hurried back to Queens to attend the Planning Board 8 meeting where there was a great deal of discussion on Jamaica and that board is planning on adopting a resolution in support of the school. There was a contingent from the school including parents, students and teachers at that meeting also.
It was good to see that Gotham Schools published a piece I co-wrote with Francis Lewis High School Chapter Leader Arthur Goldstein.
Tonight I am catching up on emails and getting reacquainted with my daughter Kara. I understand students from Jamaica are going again to one of the schools proposed for phase out in the Bronx to work with pupils there on their student alliance. That's great stuff.
Saturday morning, I will be speaking at the emgergency parent meeting on school closing and charter invasions of public schools at the School for the Future in Manhattan.
There were a couple of negative points that were a little depressing. School closings were relegated to pages 26-30 in the NY Teacher. That's not exactly a priority story. Also, at Wednesday's UFT High School Committee a new Chapter Leader suggested that the UFT was capable of shutting down all the schools and he was met with a response of, "Grow up." When a call for some kind of major union action is dismissed as blasphemy by a member of the ruling caucus, it shows you the state of our union better than anything I can say.