Emmelle Israel, AFL-CIO Media Outreach fellow, took part in the Save Our Schools rally this weekend and sends us this report.
Educators, students and community members from across the nation joined together July 30 for the Save Our Schools March and National Day of Action. The crowd of thousands rallied for two hours in the Washington, D.C., summer sun on the Ellipse Park, just south of the White House. After hearing from speakers such as former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Education and New York University professor Diane Ravitch to actor/activist Matt Damon—whose mother was a teacher and union member—the crowd began a march around the White House. The rally united everyone under the cause of education reform, but the variety of signs and slogans on display (“We Need Teachers Not Tests,” “Equality for English Learning Students,” “Cut Corporations Not Education”) emphasized the variety of issues that need to be addressed to rebuild public education.