Mayor Allocates $$$ For School Climate: Let's Do This Right!

What do YOU want to tell the Mayor about Investing in Schools, Not Police?
Share your thoughts in our brief survey here: tinyurl.com/SchoolsNotPolice

TU members and our partners in the Dignity in Schools Campaign (DSC) have spent over a decade in the movement against zero tolerance, metal detectors, and increased policing in schools.

In his preliminary budget released in January, Mayor de Blasio proposed nearly $45 million for positive school safety resources. When it comes to the criminalization of students, the political tide is turning thanks to committed, grassroots organizing.

But shouldn't this money go to... schools?

IMG_0784_0.JPG

Schools have long been asking for the capacity to hire a Restorative Justice Coordinator on staff to support student and family leadership, professional development, and community involvement. These are key to sustainable and meaningful positive shifts in school culture.

However, 88% of the school climate package funds a piecemeal continuation of professional development training by unaccountable private vendors rather than going to schools through a coordinated plan.

Our members know too well how ineffective programs can be when run by those disconnected from a school 's community. The assumption that those outside of public schools are educational "experts" has given rise to a host of destructive reforms. With this in mind, Teachers Unite members and DSC-NY provided the Mayor and Chancellor with a blueprint for successfully supporting Restorative Justice in schools from the bottom up.

As we state in our video message, Restorative Justice is not a trendy new buzzword or a policy mandate from above. It is a reflective, cultural shift that takes years for schools to learn. Let's invest in our public schools by respecting their choices for how to best shift school climate.

What if the mayor's budget allocated $20 million to school site staffing, youth and parent leadership, as well as professional development and coordination? We demand that the mayor's budget do this right and kickstart something inspiring, something that lasts.

What do YOU want to tell the Mayor about Investing in Schools, Not Police?
Share your thoughts in our brief survey here: tinyurl.com/SchoolsNotPolice

Make Your Voice Heard! Join Teachers Unite and DSC-NY at the Education Budget Hearing on Wednesday, March 16th. For more info, write to info [at] teachersunite [dot] net.