Sunday, May 19, 2013

Rally against closing schools with inadequate public input- TODAY

GPS Pittsburgh Rolling Rally Route and Detailed Itinerary as of 5/17: 

Rally 1: Directly across from Pittsburgh Obama at the Pittsburgh Theological Seminary

3:15 Framing the Issue: The state of public schools across the nation - Nina Esposito Visgitis, PFT President
3:18 Student speaks to school closings and relocating - Mya McCray, senior at Obama
3:20 Ask to school board candidates (Sylvia Wilson & Lucille Praytor Holiday, District 1) - Rev Herndon
   3:21 Response (2 min each)
   3:25 Blessings/Send off - Rev Thornton
3:26 Board Buses
3:30 Depart

Rally 3: Burgwin School - Hazelwood

3:45 Action United: Highlighting this community with no public school in the neighborhood. Prime example of a community in need of a neighborhood impact study to asses the impact of school closing on the neighborhood since Gladstone Middle School closed over a decade ago and Burgwin in over 6 years ago. Burgwin closed in 2006 in first round of District's "right-sizing" plan for public schools. Building is still empty.
4:00 Bus Arrives 
      4:05: Former Burgwin school counselor speaks to issue - Tijuani Phelps Jackson, Counselor Pittsburgh Colfax 
      4:07 Ask of School Board Candidates - Hazel
      4:08 Response - Terry Kennedy & Steve Deflitch,, District 5  - 
   4:12 Thank you/send off - Rev Thornton 
   4:13 Board Buses 
   4:15 Depart
Final Action: Former Schenley High School

4:45 Buses arrive 
4:50 Intro - Rev Thornton
      4:52 One Pgh - The funding problem 
      4:55 HDEC - Highlighting the sale of Schenley & the disregarded community & political voice against closing Schenley & what  
      school meant to community - Tamanika Howze - Hill District Resident, AAAPS 
      4:57 Yinzercation - Yinzercation - "School Size" -- this is one of the key arguments that will be used in school closure
      debates & leads into intro of independent impact studies . - Jessie Ramey
5:00: Call to action - Rev Thornton
Asks: To Board - Rev Thornton 
  1. A moratorium on school closings until local, independent neighborhood impact studies are conducted 
       5:01: Response - Mark Brentley & Regina Holley (agreed to above ask)
       5:05: Ask to Mayoral Candidates - Rev Thornton 

      Ask for Mayoral candidates to speak to: 
  1. No school closings before neighborhood impact studies are conducted.
  2. Make everyone pay their fair share: Explore and advocate for enhanced and additional sources of revenue before considering cuts or closings
  3. Keep public schools public: Reject any plan to give any control of our schools to the private sector
5:06 Response - Peduto, Wagner, Wheatley 
5:15 Recap of Accomplishments & Next Step for Great Public School Pittsburgh Vision Statements - Irene Habermann 
   5:18 Thank you/Prayer/Song - Rev Thornton  
5:20: Board Buses

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