Committed To Fighting For Equity and Access in Public Education

Featuring interviews, testimony and analysis on issues facing public education in the U.S. through voices of teachers, parents, students, community members, education activists and education scholars. Education Radio is committed to exposing the profit driven interests fueling current education policies while addressing issues of true equity and access in public education.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

We are the 99%: Fighting for the "Public" in Education

In this week’s program, we feature the Occupy Together movement; also referred to as the 99% movement. We share testimony of educators, parents, students, and teacher union organizers who are participating, and we reflect on the time we spent at Occupy locations in New York, Boston and Amherst, Massachusetts. We also explore the deep connections between this movement and the fight for equity in public education.

We are living in a time when banks and corporations responsible for the most recent economic collapse received massive government bailouts, many of which are now thriving more than ever, and corporate profits on a whole are at an all time high. Military spending is higher now than at any point since World War II as a means to build and maintain a much-despised empire abroad, and despite a major recession, the wealthiest Americans have grown even richer. 

Consequently, massive and extensive unemployment is making a bad situation worse for many, especially African Americans and Latinos who are experiencing further declines in employment rates, rising poverty rates, falling homeownership rates, and decreasing health insurance and retirement coverage. Additionally, the overall number of people living in poverty has reached the largest number in the 51 years for which poverty estimates are available; and the income gap between the top 10 percent and the bottom 90 percent has reached a level higher than any other since 1917, which includes the “Great Depression” of the 1930s. 

Set against this context, we at Education Radio have been inspired by the 99% movement – and see ourselves not as outside of it as neutral bystanders, but as deeply connected to it, with a responsibility to use the platform we have to continue to disrupt the dominant narrative. So a group of us spent a few days down at Occupy Wall Street, observing, participating, and documenting the range of participant voices, specifically those who are invested in public education.

You can download mp3s of this program via the following links:
Program #10 We are the 99% on Internet Archive
Program #10 We are the 99% on Audioport (Podcast)

Also, find out more about the 99% Movement and the Teacher Activist Groups you heard about in this program here:
Occupy Wall Street
New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCORE)
New Jersey Teacher Activist Group
Occupy the Hood 
People of Color Working Group at OWS
Cornel West on Democracy Now
Ira Shor

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