Over 1,500 students and education organizers rallied in Albany on January 14 to demand fair school funding in New York State. Led by the Alliance for Quality Education (AQE) and Citizen Action of New York, both OTL allies, the organizers called for a $1.9 billion investment in public schools to begin reversing five years of budget cuts and fixing an education system fraught with inequality.
From WXXI News:
“A couple hundred of the protesters held a brief sit in outside Governor Cuomo’s offices, singing ‘We Shall Not Be Moved’. They heard from students whose schools have been affected by spending cuts.
Trinh Truong is from Utica, where she attends the public high school. She says recent cuts at her school included sports teams, and college counselors. She says she and her fellow students were forced to hold a fundraiser in order to buy materials they needed for their chemistry class lab.
‘The disparity between schools like mine and schools that are glowing ivory towers is unconstitutional,’ she said. ‘Students should not have the responsibility of selling coupon books to fund their science projects.’”
You can view pictures from the event on AQE’s Facebook page.
You especially do NOT want to miss this video of Ramya Ramana, New York City’s 2014 Youth Poet Laureate, reading a poem about the importance of education and its status as a civil right that all students deserve. Ramya recently performed at NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s inauguration.