• #WeStandWithTampa
    On the 9th of May, Governor Ron DeSantis signed FSB 7030 putting our students in harm's way by allowing weapons in classrooms. The bill will allow Florida teachers to arm themselves within classrooms. Recent studies have shown that the (facial) expressions of Black students are 4.12 times more likely to be misidentified as  angry than white students’ faces by teachers in the classroom. The results of the study strongly suggest that, just like police officers, teachers exercise similar implicit racial bias when interacting with students within the classroom. Putting guns in the hands of teachers, whose role is to educate, nurture, and inspire sets a dangerous precedent for discipline, intimidation, and violence against Black students in the classroom. Across the nation, there are alarming disparities in the rates at which Black students are disciplined in comparison to their White peers.  Furthermore, the severity of punishments for the similar offenses carry a harsher reality for Black students. Black children are more likely to fall victim to harm should teachers become armed. According to the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice, last school year Black children made up 51% of school-related arrests across the state, despite making up 21% of the student population. It’s important to note the top three reasons for arrests were incidents where students were unarmed, with the second highest incident being “disorderly conduct”. Due to a systematic process of cuts in schools across the country, behavior modification training is not available to teachers in many districts; therefore, incidents of this nature rarely involve de-escalation practices, but rather punitive punishment and traumatizing outcomes for students and teachers. Teachers should not bear the burden of policing classrooms, and we understand that Black children will be first to fall victim to gun violence in the classroom when weapons are provided to educators. Hillsborough County Public Schools Superintendent Jeff Eakins recently released a statement advising that Hillsborough County teachers will not be armed in the classroom, in alignment with the district decision to “opt out” of FSB 7030’s Guardian Program. Sign the petition to acknowledge that #WeStandWithTampa (Hillsborough County Public Schools) to ensure our schools are armed with alternative means of corrective action, rather than firearms in the hands of teachers. STAND WITH TAMPA (Hillsborough County Public Schools) to “opt out” of harmful practices by refusing to arm teachers in the classroom.
    1,660 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by RUTH DALEY
  • #BlackSchoolsMatter: Save Our Schools
    Raines and Ribault, two of Jacksonville’s oldest, predominantly Black high schools, are under threat now that the Duval County School Board is considering a consolidation plan for nearly 42 schools in its districts. After years of neglect and deterioration, at least 56 of Duval County’s school buildings have been rated ‘below average’ and are in badly need of repairs on a tight budget. The School Board’s solution? To potentially eliminate and consolidate two schools whose rich histories have deeply shaped Jacksonville’s culture and legacy. At an initial meeting to discuss a master facilities plan for the schools moving forward, parents were handed proposals developed by an external consulting entity that included no input from them whatsoever. And although the Board claims that it is taking the residents’ feedback into consideration moving forward, they have yet to present a plan for ensuring that the community’s approval is embedded into the decision-making around a proposal that has the potential to reshape the landscape of Jacksonville and its community forever. Raines, which was built as a result of the historic Brown v Education decision that would formally end racial segregation in education, is a testament to Black people’s commitment to providing opportunities for their children that they themselves were once barred access from. Ribault’s history is different but intertwined with that of Raines’ -- originally built to cater to the “whites-only” population of northwest Jacksonville, it quickly became predominantly Black during the 70’s as white people left the area en masse to live in the suburbs. In the meantime, both schools developed reputations as athletic powerhouses and built a formidable rivalry -- one that has brought the Black community of Jacksonville together to build traditions through games, sporting events, and tailgates for generations. Now, those traditions are at risk of disappearing with no guarantee that what will be built in its place will actually work for the communities it seeks to serve. Studies show that school closures hit Black students the hardest, and that those students rarely end up benefiting academically from their new schools. They are the most likely to be displaced, and the least likely to receive a better education for it. The lack of input from parents and alumnae for a proposal that will deeply affect their children’s opportunities and prospects is yet another reflection of the larger cycle of disinvestment from Black communities that these school closures and consolidations represent. We know that nothing that is built without us can be for us. We must protect the legacy of the community and traditions our schools have built in Jacksonville. We must defend the sanctity of our children’s futures and safety. Sign now to demand that Superintendent Dr. Diana Greene and the Duval County School board release an official plan for ensuring community input is not only a part of the Board’s considerations, but is tied to its final decision-making process. Give parents and alumnae the final say. Take action now to save our schools!
    1,484 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Friends of Northwest Jacksonville Schools Friends of Northwest Jacksonville Schools
  • Tell Mayor Bill de Blasio to End Arrests, Summons, and Juvenile Reports in Schools
    New York City (NYC) must reverse policies that have proven ineffective at creating safe and supportive environments for students. Policing in schools promotes the exclusion and criminalization of Black and Latinx students, rather than their education. NYC should end arrests, as well as the issuance of summonses and juvenile reports, in schools for non-criminal violations and misdemeanors. Research shows that policing in schools fails to make schools safer or reduce bullying or fighting. The presence of police criminalizes typical adolescent behavior, such as disorderly conduct, which is the number one reason for summons in our schools. Experiencing an arrest for the first time in high school nearly doubles the odds of the student dropping out, and a court appearance nearly quadruples the odds of the student dropping out. Police in NYC schools largely police low-level offenses, including normal youthful behavior. In the last year, nearly 85 percent of all arrests, summonses, and NYPD juvenile reports of young people in NYC schools were for misdemeanors and violations. For Black and Latinx students our schools continue to be an on-ramp into the criminal justice system. Policing in schools creates extreme and persistent racial disparities. -Black girls are 10.4 times more likely to be arrested and 6.3 times more likely to be issued a summons than their White peers. -Black boys are 5.6 times more likely to be arrested and 9 times more likely to receive a summons than White boys. -Black and Latinx students account for 92% of all summons and 89% of all arrests. To end racial disparities in arrests, summons, and juvenile reports, the city must commit to ending these practices altogether. Instead of criminalizing young people, New York City should invest in supportive services like restorative justice, mental health supports, guidance counselors, and social workers.
    4,576 of 5,000 Signatures
    Created by Urban Youth Collaborative Picture
  • Protect California's Public Schools
    It’s time to put our resources and support behind the educators and schools which continue to teach the overwhelming majority of California’s school children. As you make staffing and personnel choices, we urge you to get the foxes out of the henhouse at the California Department of Education (CDE). The current configuration of the CDE devotes a disproportionate amount of staff and resources to a movement and agenda funded largely by billionaires which is underperforming, unaccountable, segregationist, rife with financial waste, and undemocratic.
    1,380 of 2,000 Signatures
    Created by Mike Hutchinson
  • Bring Back Supper & Sports For Oakland Students!
    Despite community demands to make cuts at the top and keep cuts away from students, OUSD made cuts closest to the kids. Now 3,000 low-income kids will lose daily meals and 500 kids will lose sports programs. When studies clearly show that: kids who are hungry struggle to learn, kids need safe places to go after-school, and sports can provide pathways to academic success for underserved kids. To protect our most vulnerable children, we demand the Board and the Superintendent: 1. Immediately Reinstate Funding to bring back the Free Supper program and the ten Oakland Athletic League sports programs 2. Adopt the following Student Equity Criteria: ● No cuts to direct services to kids in classrooms or on campus that are core to kids’ ability to learn and succeed in school. ● No cuts that disproportionately harm students with highest-need by conducting an impact assessment for any proposed cuts. Moving forward, in order to resolve our budget crisis AND protect our students, we need a new public budget process and stronger community oversight to ensure the hard decisions required (to shift significant resources out of Central Office to schools) can be made. What the first round of budget cuts has shown is, that without greater community control over resources in the district and a collective vision for equity - the students most in need will have their supports cut first. HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO NOW! ● SIGN and SHARE this petition tinyurl.com/reversecutstokids ● EMAIL Board members to Bring Back Supper and Sports for all Oakland Kids! tinyurl.com/emailousdboard ● ATTEND the Board Fiscal Vitality Ctte meetings from now through December to protect the highest need students in any future cuts (the board will make up to $60M in cuts over the next two years)! The Justice for Oakland Students Coalition (J4OS) is a group of deeply concerned students, parents/families, teacher allies, and community organizations who came together around four pillars that center students with highest need – so all kids can learn and succeed! 1) Shift money from Central Office directly to schools; 2) Stop the proliferation of charter schools and re-invest in making all in-district schools excellent; 3) Divest from school police and reinvest in a culture of restorative justice, real school safety and inclusion; and 3) Honor the principles of equity, meaningful engagement of students and parents, democratic decision-making and shared governance.
    2,089 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by J4OS Justice For Oakland Students Coalition Picture
  • Reinstate Bishop Talbert Swan
    Bishop Swan was a strong voice of resistance against racism, white supremacy, and in justice. He was an uncompromising in challenging hypocrisy and advocating for the most vulnerable. Twitter suspended his account without notice because of the complaints of right wing racist and Trump supporting bots and trolls would choose to him of racism for his candid condemnation of bigotry. Bishop Swan had over 70,000 followers and was a leading voice of the resistance. He had a verified account and was an influencer on the social media platform.
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    Created by Bishop Talbert Swan Picture
  • Maintain Black Legacy and Involvement at African Museum
    A broad-based coalition of well- respected Detroit organizations hereby express concern for the future direction of the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History following the abrupt departure of beloved CEO Juanita Moore. We, the community groups and individuals who cherish the Museum for its dedication to serving our cultural and educational interests and aspirations, demand for representation on the governing board and in the search for the CEO successor. CAMPAIGN ORGANIZERS: Detroit Organizations Supporting Black Legacy and Community Involvement of Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History Alkebu-lan Village Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), Detroit Chapter Blackness Unlimited Broadside Lotus Press City of Detroit Council of Elders Conant Gardens Property Owners Association Detroit Black Community Food Security Network Detroit Independent Freedom Schools Movement Detroit MLK Day Committee Eastern Michigan Environmental Action Council In the Tradition Jazz Band Inner City Sub Center James and Grace Lee Boggs Center to Nurture Community Leadership Keep the Vote NO Takeover Malcolm X Grassroots Movement Million Man Alumni Association National Conference of Black Lawyers, Michigan Chapter NCobra Reparations Operation Get Down Pan-African Newswire Petty Propolis Pitch Black Poetry Timbuktu Academy We the People of Detroit West Side Unity Church
    15,818 of 20,000 Signatures
    Created by Tawana Petty
  • Because I Overcame Homelessness, They Denied Me A Scholarship. Help Me Appeal.
    Hi, I am Zaviona woodruff and I live in Kalamazoo Michigan. My family has overcome so much such as homelessness and the Kalamazoo Promise scholarship will make a college education for me a reality. I learned that I will not be reviving the Kalamazoo Promise scholarship because my family experienced and overcame homelessness only to learn that we were mislead about still living in the Kalamazoo district. Even though I still went to Kalamazoo Public Schools and should have been eligible, Kalamazoo Promise Executive Director Bob Jorth denied my scholarship on a technicality even though they look at each student on a case by case basis. Without the Kalamazoo Promise which gives students like me who went to Kalamazoo public schools to have their tuition completely, or partially, paid off, I can't afford my college dream on my own. My dad is a single father to my two younger sisters and me. He never graduated high school; in fact he went to Loy Norrix and dropped out but went back for his GED. He did not go to college but has always stresses the importance of it. He has jumped from job to job trying to make a safe, stable home for us though sometimes we have hardly enough to get by. While we have always had a roof above our heads,sometimes my dad just didn't have enough for much else. College, always his dream for us, is going to be something I will have to find a way to pay for myself. In the middle of my 10th grade year, my family and I lived in a homeless shelter after we were evicted from our home. At the homeless shelter we were, thankfully, still in the KPS District and had a bus to and from school. We spent about 2-4 months at the homeless shelter. We even spent Christmas there. Stay at the shelter was an experience that has taught me that people can not take for granted the possessions that they have. I had to share a room with my father and two little sisters. Imagine-if you have siblings- sharing a room with them and your parents. There we two bathrooms one upstairs one downstairs. These bathrooms were shared with everyone in the shelter. After a certain time you had to in your room, lights off really. No more roaming around or getting cold water from the refrigerator. After staying in the shelter for those months, my dad found an apartment complex called Big Bend. He applied for a three bedroom, two bathroom apartment for the four of us. The leasing agent employee there assured my dad that the apartment complex was indeed in the KPS district. They lied. Big Bend is not in the Kalamazoo Public Schools District; these apartments are in the Comstock District. Imagine our disbelief and disappointment when we were denied a bus to and from school and were told at registration for enrollment in KPS that we lived in the Comstock District. That was my Junior year and I knew that at that point I would be losing the one thing that was going to help me get through college: the Kalamazoo Promise. Even though my family was lied to, that i continued to go to KPS, that I continued to bust my ass in school I don't get any money to help with college. I was planning on attending Oakland University this coming fall but I don't know anymore. Taking out loans could hurt me more than help me. I just wanted to share this with someone. Anyone who could help. I have so many teachers backing me up, some many people who would give recommendations. I don't know what to do.
    299 of 300 Signatures
    Created by Zaviona Woodruff
  • Stop Children from Dying During Divorce and Custody Proceedings
    A mother who is a veteran had to return home from Iraq and fight the battle for her children. The children were taken from her safe and sustainable home, and 50/50 custody order. The mother was falsely arrested. The charges where dismissed but the ramification lingered. Nine years later the mother and her children have no relationship. The children were forced to live full-time with their abusive father leaving them vulnerable to mental, physical and emotional abuse at critical developmental stages in there lives. The court's decision has traumatized the mother and placed the children in danger. As of September 24, 2018, at least 657 children have been murdered by a parent involved in a divorce, separation, custody, visitation, or child support situation in the U.S. since 2008. Abusive parents are often granted custody or unprotected parenting time by family courts—placing our nation’s children at ongoing risk. Researchers who interviewed judges and court administrators following some of these tragedies found that most believed these were isolated incidents. Needed reforms have not been implemented. Many court-related child homicides occurred after family courts granted dangerous parents access to children over the objections of a protective parent. We recognize that the women's right's movement is still a work in progress. Marginalized women face multiple oppressions, and we can only win freedom by bringing awareness on how they impact one another. The women of color need a national movement to uplift the needs of the most marginalized women and children. As women of color we need to stand for our human rights to parent the children we have in a safe and sustainable community.
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    Created by Mother's Standing For Children Picture
  • Tell Chancellor Blumenthal to Remember Dr. Huey P. Newton
    Watch our video for UCSC Students: https://spark.adobe.com/video/gjYVChjDJ0MvY Chancellor Blumenthal named 2018 the "Year of Alumni" to honor the legacies and accomplishments of UCSC graduates. Since January our campus has been decorated with the faces and achievements of notable UCSC alumni, but one important name is missing: Dr. Huey P. Newton. Huey Newton earned his Ph.D in History of Consciousness at UCSC in 1980, after finishing his dissertation on the repression the Black Panther Movement faced at the hands of the state. UC Santa Cruz administrators and the UC system co-opt narratives of activism and "non-traditional thinking" while intentionally erasing the intellectuals who were thinking non-traditionally. The erasure of Dr. Huey P. Newton as an academic (at the university from which he earned his Ph.D) contributes to the social perception that Black people (especially those engaged in activism) are separate from/do not have a place in academia. We are asking Chancellor Blumenthal to rethink the erasure of Dr. Newton's academic career at UCSC, by naming College 10 in his honor and to uphold College 10's mission of social justice. Renaming the college Dr. Huey P. Newton College, will serve as a permanent reminder of Huey Newton's scholarly achievements and his dedication to his community/the public good.
    6 of 100 Signatures
    Created by UCSC Student Activists
  • The Jesuits Sold 272 Enslaved People. Georgetown Benefited. We Demand Reparatory Justice.
    Georgetown University almost went bankrupt in 1838. Why didn’t it? Because the Jesuits sold 272 enslaved Africans (the GU272) to benefit Georgetown. Without this sale, Georgetown would not have become the robust and academically strong university it is today. The Jesuits and Georgetown tore those men, women and children from the land that, although enslaved, they had called home and literally sent them “down the river” to Louisiana — one of the cruelest places for enslaved people in the United States. Many of the GU272’s descendants remain in Louisiana, some impoverished and in various states of ill-health, while others live throughout the country. Upon learning their ancestors’ fate, some descendants are asking Georgetown and the Jesuits to “do the right thing” and provide them with reparatory justice. The Jesuits and Georgetown have a historic opportunity to demonstrate how engagement with the descendants can lead to true racial healing – a healing that takes place among equals – rather than the racial subordination that led to the enslavement of the GU272 and other African peoples.
    2,260 of 3,000 Signatures
    Created by Legacy of the GU272 Alliance Legal Team
  • Sign Onto The People's Budget: Break The Cages, Fund The People
    On May 1st, at 5pm at City Hall, The Philadelphia Coalition for a Just District Attorney is gathering our movement under a call to end mass incarceration and reinvest in the communities most affected. For too long, “tough on crime” policies have deliberately targeted our black, brown, and working class communities -- ICE is tearing apart families, our youth are being criminalized in school and treated as adults by our overzealous criminal justice system, and the legal system's reliance on cash bail continues to overcrowd our prisons, keeping the House of Correction facility open despite its notoriety for its decrepit conditions. While District Attorney Larry Krasner has made significant progress in his mandate to challenge mass incarceration, our coalition recognizes there are other political actors who hold the power to divest from prisons and invest in people. In the upcoming months, the School District of Philadelphia, the Philadelphia Police and Prison Departments, and the First Judicial District will be presenting their fiscal year budgets to City Council for approval. On May 1st, both the Police and Prison Department will be presenting their budgets. We need Philadelphia City Council to support a "People's Budget" and use these hearings to advocate for increased funding for our public school system and decreased spending on incarceration.
    521 of 600 Signatures
    Created by Philadelphia Coalition For a Just DA
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