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UTLA taking aim at ‘Broad-Walmart’ plan in national ‘walk-in’

LA School Report | January 20, 2016



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UTLA protests outside of The Broad museum in downtown Los Angeles.

The LA teachers union, UTLA, is planning to take part in a national “walk-in” event on Feb. 17 set to take place at schools in at least 30 cities, including Los Angeles.

The walk-in is being organized by the Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools, a national group of parent, youth and community organizations and labor groups whose stated goal  is “fighting for educational justice and equity in access to school resources and opportunities.”

The walk-in, according to UTLA’s website, will involve UTLA members, parents and students gathering outside of their school, “then they all walk into their schools together building solidarity amongst our members as they will feel the power of collective action. Walk-ins build relationships. Walk-ins build power. Walk-ins build hope!”

The website adds: “This action to RECLAIM OUR SCHOOLS will push back on the privatizing agenda and call for greater investment in public education and justice. UTLA is leading the local effort for this nationwide action by tailoring the walk-in to the needs of each school while also keeping in view the need for fully-funded and resourced public education.”

In his monthly column in the the UTLA newsletter, UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl said the walk-in locally will have several agendas, including  show of opposition to the Great Public School Now initiative to expand charter schools in LA Unified. Due to the involvement of philanthropist Eli Broad and members of the Walton family, UTLA constantly refers to the initiative as the “Broad-Walmart” plan.

Caputo-Pearl wrote that the walk-in “is strategically aligned to influence the debate in the national presidential primaries. We will be making history as we move forward our local struggles in support of community schools and against Broad-Walmart—and make these struggles immensely more powerful by placing them in a national context.”

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