Tuesday, February 3, 2015

On the Teach-In, teaching #NAWD & some history

…a revisited and only moderately updated 2011 newsletter article that, given distribution and placement, I should have blogged here in the first place. So now, thanks to #NAWD and revived Teach-In interest, I'm getting to it. Defend Public Education emerged in 2009, grew, peaked in 2011 and then seemed to fade into Occupy ~ now in eclipse as well. The teach-in / walkout connection is clearer now. 

Not all walkouts are strikes, nor are all labor related. Social injustice, not labor, is the real connection. Students are among likeliest out-walkers. Google walkout and you get more students than unions. Considering workplace inequities, labor practices are a natural target. The last major U.S. walkout was by students in Wisconsin in 2011. 

By way of the sit-in (which also connects to occupy), there's a clear walkout/teach-in connection. I'm somewhat puzzled by the paucity of meaningful online material on both but chalk it up to Eli Pariser's filter bubble. We are not encouraged to remember these connections. Somewhat more history follows below. For the complete newsletter, see the link at the bottom of the post. A more extensive collection of resource links is being bundled and will appear later -- but still in time for teaching-in later this month.

March 2011 was a month of action, in part planned by Defend Public Education and other groups as a coordinated series of actions supporting public education continuing and expanding on those of October 7, 2010 and March 4, 2010. This round, Wisconsin upped the ante. March actions, spreading into April and beyond, moved from previously planned to reactions supporting a broader cause. The massive attack on collective bargaining, public services workers, and public services was not limited to public education. Proposed legislation called for cutting public services drastically and, as part of budgetary package, dismantling or severely restricting collective bargaining.

In March we watched the actions on TV, followed it live online, web streamed and tweeted, and participated when and where possible. Protest manifested in petitions, rallies, marches, demonstrations, and teach-ins, with one California campus holding a "ramen-in."

(Update Notes)
The best covered and recorded, at least in terms of what has lasted, yields results to searches, 2011 Teach-In would have to be the April 5, 2011, National Teach-In on Debt, Austerity, Corporate Greed and What Can Be Done. Like the Defend Public Education page (which would have made a splendid model for NAWD), the event website is gone. The FB Event page infested with spam and bad links. Teach-In coverage remains on The Guardian and elsewhere as well as on a full set of YouTube videos. And now here too.

(back to the original article)

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