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To Whom It May Concern:

The Supreme Court’s decision in the Case of San Antonio v. Rodriques in 1973 decided very early that our legal and American rights to an education is suspect in most states and most states are reluctant to accept the responsibility to educate students, much less the disadvantaged and poor students. This ruling affects what staff is hired and what staff is forced out of public school systems.

We, the undersigned, a cross section of the nation’s teachers and their supporters, wish to express our extreme displeasure with the policies implemented during the past school year(s).

1. This includes, but is not limited to systematic removal of many diverse ethnic and minority teachers and most noted, African-American teachers, staff and administrators for race, ethnicity, gender, harassment, intimidation, age discrimination and other unexplained disciplinary reasons.

2. Many of these reasons have been used in combination to dismiss, force retirement, foster health concerns and lingering administrative leaves of absence. Although many of us had campaigned enthusiastically for the past and present administration in 2008 to the present, we admonish that it is unlikely that continued support can be sustained. The following dimensions of the current administration’s education initiatives must be changed
:
• The exclusion of diverse teachers from policy discussions in the US Department of Education and from Education Summits called under the current leadership.

• The use of rhetoric which blames ‘failing schools’ on ‘bad teachers’ ( most noted are the African-American educators) rather than the social issues of poverty, neighborhood distress and other issues imposed on the teachers and other staff in the school district politically.

• The use of federal funds to compel states and municipalities to use student test scores in the evaluation of teachers and as the basis for closing low performing schools which comprise predominantly ‘ethnic people of color’, notably African-American students.

• Because of these policies, a diverse population of teachers, other educational staff, parents and the community throughout the nation have become polarized, discouraged and demoralized while you at the same time undermine your own stated goals of improving teacher quality, upgrading the nation's educational performance which discourages ‘creative pedagogy’ and encourages ‘teaching to the test.’

• The incorporation and greater input of corporations in determining educational outcomes in school districts as well as the destroying of the public school has removed all educational professionals, parents and communities (specifically African-Americans and other ‘Ethnic People of Color’) from having any meaningful educational input into the changes made in their schools.

• We, therefore, submit the following measures to put your administration’s education policies to get back on the right track and to bring diversity of teachers and others in as full partners in this effort to improve public education while not without resorting to discriminatory private charter/voucher schools which have no legislated accountability. This, therefore, will foster a non-law compliance attitude in the hiring practices of teachers and other staff by fostering rules that can violate the Constitution of the U.S.; the State’s legislated laws on Education and the Civil Rights of all involved actively in education (students, staffs and parents/community at large). As is the practice now in Charter/Voucher Schools there is an exclusionary non-diverse student population criteria being used to populate them, At the same time parents are being restrained from their child’s educational plan yet they are supporting them with their tax dollar.

o The incorporation of diverse representation of parents, teachers, community people and school administrators in all policy discussions and changes taking place in our schools and communities inside and outside the Department of Education.

* An immediate end to the use of incentives or penalties to compel states and municipalities to use student test scores in public schools as the only basis for evaluating teachers, students and schools while exempting private charter schools and other voucher schools. thus requiring the closure of low performing public schools without a remediation plan and time to improve and allowing failing Charter Schools not to be rated according to test scores, but to proliferate and grow in numbers in Public School Districts.

* Create a National Commission in which equality and diversity will mandate that teachers and parent representatives play a primary role in education and the schools, This will demonstrate how to best improve the quality of America’s schools with massive constituent support.

* Use the same legislated rules and laws to rate Charter Schools as are Public Schools and impose the same accountability criteria to educate students.

* Just as in other professions (such as doctors, lawyers, accountants, etc.) allow Educators to have a greater input in determining the ‘best practices in the classroom’. Hire District Heads that exemplify this ethic and respect of the ‘Educator’ as it has been done in the past. Most Statesmen, Doctors, Lawyers and other Professionals went through the Public School Systems and are now leaders who got their education through what has become a ‘political and corporate company advertisement’ –FAILING SCHOOLS. SO LET THE FEDERAL GOVERNMEN FIX THE SCHOOLS THE POLITICAL AND CORPORATE WAY.

* We believe such policies will create an outpouring of good will on the part of all teachers, parents/community and students no matter what race, ethnicity, gender, age and social standing. It will promote creative teaching and educational innovation. This will lead to far greater improvements in the nation’s schools rather than the corporate and political policies which encourage a proliferation of student testing and private charters and voucher schools while using public money. This has fostered a political platform and corporate greed and input which has fostered ‘taxation without representation’ on the larger population of constituents and consumers. The studens’ welfare has been the last to be considered in the current Administration’s ‘Turn-around Education Plan’.
The undersigned of this petition must be taken seriously as knowledgeable and concerned taxpayers who support the public schools’ existence through their taxes and suggest that you improve them not replace them with our tax dollars.

Sincerely,
The Undersigned

Name (Print) Name (Signature) City/State Denver, Colorado______
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Cozette Hammock-WestBy:
Justice, rights and public orderIn:
Petition target:
General Public, Taxpayer, President, Federal Education Dept. Parents, Students, Communities

Petition community:
Alliance For Justice In Education

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federal, government, public school

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