Thursday, June 19, 2014

CERESTA SMITH
For NEA Executive Committee

Defend the Right to Public Education for ALL Students!

Stop the Privatization of Public Education!

Build the New Social Justice Labor Movement!

I have been on the forefront of organizing on the community level to fight for and to protect public education, and while out there I discovered that as we struggle to provide quality public education for all communities, we have to take our struggle to the community and take on their struggles as our own. To put it simply, it is how we build a movement that can win and takes on the critical issues facing the nation today. As a staunch defender of equality and a fighter for social justice via my leadership in Save Our Schools March and United Opt Out National and my involvement in Bad Ass Teachers Association; I am a candidate that knows how to build and sustain a movement for progress.

With progressive leadership we can fight to restore quality and equality in education, in our schools, and in our communities.  We can end the school to prison pipeline. We can end the shutting down of community public schools and the handing of them over to private profit, and we can end the dismantling of the teaching profession via a flawed accountability system. All of these injustices are fueled and fostered by high stakes testing.  In the process of restoring what we’ve lost and extending our gains, we can end NEA’s adapting to policies that are filled with ill-will toward teachers and students and are aimed at damaging public education and collective bargaining.

According to teacher educator and author Lois Weiner "social movement" unionism gets at the need for empowering members, building the union from the bottom-up, making the union itself a social movement.  The BAMN Caucus and I have been on the forefront of advocacy for a social movement union model as opposed to the model that subordinates our union to the politicians and an electoral strategy and thus far too often fails to address effectively the current crises in public education and collective bargaining.  

As we face a corporate takeover that serves to privatize public education while attempting to destroy all vestiges of collective bargaining and teaching as a noble profession, the communities in which we teach and work face similar crises as they struggle to subsist in an economy that favors the wealthy and disfavors those who are not. We need to join in struggle and stand with our real allies — those who are fighting for a future of hope. We need to use our strength and resources as a union with members and supporters in every city and community across the country to fight to win! 

Vote Ceresta Smith for NEA Executive Committee. Join the EON/BAMN caucus!

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