Defend our Schools
Fighting for Education Justice

Socialism 2013

June 27, 2013

Listen to video of this panel here:


Defend our Schools
Fighting for Education Justice!
Socialism 2013
June 27, 2013
With Brian Jones, Malcolm London, Asean Johnson, Jen Johnson, Jesse Hagopian, Megan Behrent, Israel Munoz, Rousemary Vega, Sherise McDaniel and Jesse Sharkey
Listen to audio of this panel here:

Public education is under attack, the target of an offensive led by some of the most powerful people in the U.S. Supporters of corporate school reform are pushing for privatization and the testing mania--while scapegoating teachers and blaming their unions for the deep-seated problems caused by lack of funding, inequality and racism. But the Chicago Teacher Union strike last fall and the growing movement to stand up against standardized testing show that students, parents, and teachers are standing together against the attacks on public education.

The Socialism Conference brought together a powerful panel of parents, teachers, and students on the front lines of the fight to defend public education, who discussed different struggles and talked about strategies for moving forward.

Featured speakers include:

Malcolm London, Young Chicago Author who has been called the Gil-Scott Heron of his generation. Malcolm is a poet, activist, and educator.

Asean Johnson, nine year old who fought to keep his school open and delivered an amazing speech at a rally to save public schools that energized the crowd and quickly went viral.

Jen Johnson, a history teacher at Lincoln Park High School and a member of the Chicago Teachers Union*. She is a union activist and school leader, dedicated to her fellow teachers and knows that her teachers' contract protects students' education rights.

Jesse Hagopian, history teacher and Black Student Union adviser at Garfield High School* leading member of the historic boycott of the MAP standardized test.

Megan Behrent, public high school teacher in Brooklyn and a member of the United Federation of Teachers. She is a longtime union activist and a member of the Movement of Rank and File Educators (MORE)*.

Israel Munoz, high school student who co-founded Chicago Students Organizing to Save Our Schools*.

Rousemary Vega, mother of a student at Lafayette, which is one of 50 Chicago schools slated for closure. Rousemarie continues the fight to save her child's school and all Chicago public schools.

Sherise McDaniel, parent who led a fight to get her son's school, George Manierre Elementary, off of the chopping block. Sherise
continues to fight to save all Chicago schools.

Jesse Sharkey, vice President of the Chicago Teacher's Union*, which has been at the front lines of defending public education and protecting teachers against corporate "reformers".

Emceed by Brian Jones, teacher, actor and activist in New York. He contributed to the book "Education and Capitalism: Struggles for Learning and Liberation".

* organizational affiliations are intended for identification purposes, and do not imply organizational endorsements

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