Newark teachers, parents block school closing, cite 'Chicago' as example

In the face of the same neo-liberal racist attack on real public schools in the largest city in New Jersey that is being carried out on a larger scale in Chicago, teachers and parents in Newark staged a protest against the closing of a local public school, acknowledging their debt to the example of the Chicago Teachers Union. The Newark rally was held on May 22, the same day Rahm Emanuel's school board was voting on the largest schools closings in American history.

Protesters in Newark, New Jersey, oppose the closing of the Roseville Ave. school and proclaim "We stand with Chicago..." during their May 22 fight to keep the school open.Like Chicago, Newark is run by a mayor (Ivy League trained Corey Booker) whose agenda includes massive privatization, charter schools, and other attacks on public schools, public school teachers, unions, and public service.

A report shared with Substance:

"Parents, students, unions, elected officials and other concerned citizens held a rally and press conference at Roseville Avenue School in Newark, N.J., on May 22 to demand that the state-operated district of Newark reconsider the closings of the school and nearby Samuel Berliner School. The decision to shut the schools came without consulting the staff, students, parents or the community. The Newark Board of Education has taken a unanimous vote of “No Confidence” in the district’s superintendent for failing to act in a transparent manner, and the Newark City Council and Essex County Board of Freeholders unanimously called for a moratorium on school closings and layoffs until an outside auditor can review Newark’s finances. The Newark Teachers Union and other stakeholders point out that Roseville is a successful school with strong community backing, a dedicated principal, and an experienced, proven staff. Berliner, demonstrators said, provides high-quality special education services to Newark’s most needy students."