SAVE PUERTO RICO'S PUBLIC SCHOOLS!
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SAVE PUERTO RICO’S PUBLIC SCHOOLS AND THEIR TEACHERS! SAY NO TO PUERTO RICO’S SENATE BILL #825!
The governor of Puerto Rico and his Secretary of Education want to allow political and corporate interests to replace public education for its children. Their recent Senate Bill #825 to the Puerto Rican legislature will make way for private vouchers and corporate charter schools to take over school buildings and other spaces under the guise of educational reform and choice. The plan includes the closure of 300 schools and potential release of 7,000 public school teachers by the end of this school year. This, in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, while 400,000 people are still without electricity, and many are still suffering without roofs over their heads and inhumane conditions. Children were happy to finally be able to return to their public schools and reconnect with their teachers and friends, and gain some sense of normalcy.
Meanwhile, Puerto Rico's Governor Roselló and his appointed Secretary of Education Keheler met with the U.S. Department of Education Secretary Besty Devos behind closed doors, to initiate a sinister plan that will throw chaos and uncertainty back into the lives of Puerto Rican families. It is evident that some sort of agreement was made that will promote the DeVos privatization agenda to undermine public schools. This move is also a result of pressure from the financial oversight board, misnamed PROMESA, also known as La Junta, to repay a manufactured debt on the backs of innocent children. This is happening during a critical time when Puerto Ricans are in dire need to recover and build, rather than continue to be subject to colonial and corporate rule. This political move is criminal, and teachers and children need our support.
As part of a bigger move to invade the last large public good in our nation, (in the name of business enterprise) and hidden under the guise of "reform", our so-called public leaders are taking advantage of the depressed conditions in places like New Orleans after Katrina, and Puerto Rico after Maria, to eradicate public education and hand over education to unaccountable private entities. The political leaders in cahoots with corporate interests are paid by our taxes, and yet they are committed to their interests, privatizing rather than to providing public goods and services that are due to us. And yet, there is currently no way to assure that these people or places will adhere to any quality standards or increase in student performance.
A myriad of “reforms" have been used to infiltrate public school systems throughout the country, in places like Chicago, New York, and Los Angeles, yet we must recognize that now these forces are focused on Puerto Rico. We need to support Puerto Rico's public school teachers, children and their families, and sign on to have our voices heard! No reforms should be on the table without input from the Federation of Teachers and other teacher union representatives of Puerto Rico.
Save Puerto Rico's public schools and their teachers! Stop public school privatization!Say No to Senate Bill #825! Please sign on now!
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