January 17, 2017Press Release
Thousands to #SchoolTrump in Tweetstorm and ‘shield’ our schools from privatization, anti-immigrant policies in Jan. 19 protests
On the morning before inauguration day, students, parents, educators and school employees across hundreds of LAUSD schools will protest Trump’s anti-immigrant, fear-based rhetoric and policies while defending access to quality education for all students. Participants will share what they will fight for, and defend their school against, on oversized letters that will be snapped and tweeted @realDonaldTrump.
Rain or shine, demonstrators will chant and march in front of their schools with oversized signs in the shape of shields with phrases like “Shield Against Immigrant Detention” and “Shield Against Trump/DeVos/Broad/Walmart.” This action supports the fight to protect schools from privatization and union busting as well as to create safe spaces for immigrants, women and minorities. This action will be amplified by events in other cities, as part of a national day of action, coordinated with the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools.
“With the incoming administration, if we are to believe what Trump says, the very existence of public education is under threat,” said Alex Caputo-Pearl, president of UTLA. “On Thursday, we reaffirm our beliefs in the power of public education, and we stand with our students, parents and community members to say that no matter where you come from, rich or poor, when you walk through the door of a public school, you will have equal opportunities for success and a quality education.”
Trump’s nominee for the Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, has never attended a public school, nor taught at one, and has worked the last two decades to defund and dismantle public education in her home state of Michigan. DeVos has spent millions in state races on legislators who are elected and use public dollars to fund the proliferation of for-profit, unregulated charter schools and voucher programs, which have proven to be disastrous for students, especially in Detroit. The Broad and Walton foundations have bankrolled DeVos’ privatization efforts, and both Broad and DeVos collaborated in the collapse of the Michigan and Louisiana public school systems.
“Privatization of our public schools segregates our communities, divides neighborhoods and leaves out our most vulnerable students,” Caputo-Pearl added. “We must reinvest in public education, and fight the billionaire privatizers, including Republicans like DeVos and Democrats like Broad, who will dismantle it, piece by piece, and state by state.”
WHAT: #SchoolTrump Tweetstorm and Shield Our Schools Actions
WHEN: Thursday, Jan. 19
WHERE: Two media locations* (rain or shine)
Grand View Elementary: 3951 Grand View Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90066
TIME: 7 AM
A short speaker program will take place before a march up Grand View while singing “This Land is Your Land" with dozens of educators, students and parents. Attendees include: LAUSD School Board President Steve Zimmer, National Education Association President Lily Eskelsen Garcia, California Teachers Association President Eric Heins, California Federation of Teachers President Josh Pechthalt, United Teachers Los Angeles President Alex Caputo-Pearl and UTLA officers.
Arleta High School, 14200 Van Nuys Blvd., Arleta, CA 91331
TIME: 7:30 AM
Dozens of educators, students and parents, featuring Imelda Padilla, LAUSD school board candidate for District 6, UTLA officers and others, TBD. The program will include chants and a march, Aztec dancers and speeches from students in the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) and DREAMers program.
*Information on both media events will be updated throughout the week.