Volume 32, No. 4 — Summer 2018

Volume 32, No. 4 — Summer 2018
Free Editorial

Guns Out of Our Schools, Propaganda Out of Our Classrooms

There’s much that we as educators can do to combat gun violence and get guns out of our schools. One of our roles as teachers is to guide students to examine the roots of an issue. When we talk about the Bill of Rights and the roots of the Second Amendment, we can expose the popular mythology that surrounds it — that this is somehow about individuals resisting government oppression — and lay out its true intent: to defend and deepen white supremacy.  We must also lead the charge against programs like the NRA's Eddie Eagle GunSafe Program that normalize guns and gun violence.

Guns Out of Our Schools, Propaganda Out of Our Classrooms
Cover Story

The 2018 Wave of Teacher Strikes

A Turning Point for Our Schools?

The wave of struggles sweeping through the United States are more than “red state” revolts. They are rebellions against the austerity and privatization that has been driving federal and state economic policy for decades. The dynamics and political landscape are different in each state. However, almost all of the states where statewide actions have occurred are right-to-work states, which have seen the steepest cuts in school funding and sharpest erosion of teacher pay and benefits. These states are less likely to have collective bargaining rights and local district contracts. This puts more focus on state budgets and state decisions about healthcare and pensions, and encourages statewide action focused on the legislature. Consequently, many of the walkouts have been more akin to mass political protests seeking broad changes in public policy. But other common factors underlying these grassroots protests are likely to keep rebellion spreading to “purple” states like Colorado (where there was a walkout in April) and North Carolina (May) and beyond. Almost everywhere in “red states” and “blue states” alike, budget and tax policy has been used to erode social services, shrink public space, undermine union power, and transfer wealth upward, all the while making the lives of working people harder.

The 2018 Wave of Teacher Strikes
Issue Theme: Teachers Rise Up

Transforming Teacher Unions in a Post-Janus World

Bob Peterson analyzes the Janus decision's impact on teacher unions, talks with union leaders from across the country about how they are responding to it, and argues that the damage of the decision can be countered through the upsurge of progressive activism engendered by the victory of Donald Trump.

Transforming Teacher Unions in a Post-Janus World

A Hurricane in the Classroom

Inside the Schools Ensnared in Puerto Rico’s Privatization Fever — and How Its Teachers Are Fighting Back

SPECIAL REPORT: Education “reformers” are using the disaster in Puerto Rico to close hundreds of public schools and convert much of the school system to charters. But teachers, parents, and students are fighting back.

A Hurricane in  the Classroom
Features

Howling at the Ocean

Surviving My First Year Teaching

A first-year teacher struggles with what it means to be a social justice educator.

Howling at the Ocean

Seeing Ourselves with Our Own Eyes

A special education teacher uses poetry to help her middle school students write their own narratives and celebrate themselves.

Seeing Ourselves with Our Own Eyes

How My 4th-Grade Class Passed a Law on Teaching Mexican “Repatriation”

How 4th-grade students in Southern California were helped by their teachers to develop curriculum surrounding the mass deportation of U.S. citizens of Mexican heritage in the 1930s and pass a law to investigate what happened.

How My 4th-Grade Class Passed a Law on Teaching Mexican “Repatriation”

Sorry Not Sorry

Reckoning with the Power and Limitations of an Apology to Native Hawaiians

A high school teacher uses the #MeToo movement and students’ own experiences with apologies to interrogate the government’s 1993 apology to Native Hawaiians for the 1893 overthrow of the Kingdom of Hawai'i.

Sorry Not Sorry

Pushing Past Hate, Pushing Past Paladino

How One Community Organized for Racial Justice and to Remove a School Board Member

Trump supporter Carl Paladino’s racism, misogyny, and transphobia galvanized community members to oust him from the Buffalo School Board. Their struggle also laid the groundwork for new coalitions and progressive change.

Pushing Past Hate, Pushing Past Paladino