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"Teachers: On The Frontlines Of Class War"

Recorded 7-8-11

1) 2:26 Teachers: On The Frontlines Of Class War long Mp3

2) 2:04 Teachers: On The Frontlines Of Class War short Mp3


Teachers on the Front Lines of Class War 
col. writ. 7/8/11 (c) ’11 Mumia Abu-Jamal

With the news of cheating on school testing affecting over a hundred Atlanta  school teachers and administrators, we see the rotten fruit of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and its sinister twin; Race to the Top.

 Both programs designed not to educate, but to privatize American education, by punishing teachers for the sins of the entire society -- and ultimately breaking unions.

Hassled, harried, pressured and bullied by politicians in hock to their corporate contributors.

Threatened with firing in the midst of the worst recession in generations, is there any wonder why some chose erasers over removal?

The Clinton/Bush/Obama educational "reform" programs were designed, not by educators. But by businessmen, who, in an era of capitalist decline, see education as a field fit to be stripped, for the oldest of reasons: profit.

Extensive testing has shown one thing for certain -- corporate charter schools have failed in their claimed task -- educating children -- while succeeding elsewhere -- in siphoning billions from government budgets.

As for teacher accountability; why stop at teachers? Why not demand political accountability?

And I don't mean only elections. Why not annual recalls of politicians, at every level? The economy failed? Some politician lies and leads the nation into war? Recall him!

Why not?

It's certainly a democratic Idea.

The corporatization of education by business interests is furthered by politicians who may be repaying their funders, but who routinely betray their voters and their supposed constituencies.

For public education, for all of its shortcomings (and there are many!) Is the prime tool for socialization and democratization? It Is also, as Jonathan Kozol has noted, a system that is functionally an apartheid system* -- as segregated today as it was 50 years ago.

It will take a true social movement to make it fulfill its promise -- education -- for all children.

(c) '11 maj

[*Source: Kozol. Jonathan. The Shame of the Nation (New York: Crown Pub.  2005]


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"When a cause comes along and you know in your bones that it is
just, yet refuse to defend it--at that moment you begin to die.
And I have never seen so many corpses walking around talking about
justice." - Mumia Abu-Jamal

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