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Oct 142012

Our Education Circle of Change (EdCoC) members continue meeting regularly to support each other to develop Regional Circles. The vision of the regional work is to create a trans-local vehicle that will mobilize regional communities in building a national movement for the visionary transformation of public education so that teaching and learning embody and cultivate democratic, resilient communities within thriving ecosystems. We want to build a grassroots think tank generating trans-local knowledge from local, regional and issue-based convening and mapping to better understand conditions in order to support and actualize our vision of a just, sustainable and democratic education for all.

A regional circle has already started in Oakland, and we’re gearing up for circles in Chicago, New Orleans, New York and Maine. Spirit in Action is excited about this new direction of the EdCoC and is exploring partnerships with YES!, IDEA, Education for Liberation Network and other organizations to further develop regional circles and to connect them with each other. In 2013 our goal is to have our regional groups convene in national gatherings to share out their learning and provide peer support. To learn more and plug in with this regional work contact us.

Here is an update from EdCOC member, Jayeesha Dutta, on her efforts to kick off a circle in New Orleans:

“For six days, all eyes were on Chicago’s teachers and their strike.  These courageous teachers were advocating for meaningful course correction to the corporate “reform” driven educational model being pushed by Rahm Emanuel. I signed up for the text alerts from the Chicago Teachers Union and was riveted to see what would happen. I knew this could be a turning point for our movement.  The final agreement negotiated by the CTU can be seen as a major victory for not just the city of Chicago, but for the nation, for the educational justice movement and for the beleaguered labor movement.

I was on a conference call with Education Circle of Change members Laura Ramirez and Tara Mack along with Chicago teacher, parent and student activists the moment the agreement was reached. This movement moment has inspired me to call for the launching a regional Education Circle of Change circle here in New Orleans. Now, I’m gearing up to launch a series of events to bring together educational justice advocates with the support of Education Circle of Change, Education for Liberation Network, Institute for Democratic Education in America, under the auspices of Mind Power Collective.

It’s time to mobilize the activist spirit of New Orleans around education. It’s time to realize we need to align our movements across issue, across demographic, across geography. This post-Chicago teachers strike moment is prime for us to activate the trans-local movement-building vehicle we’ve been waiting to rev up. The time is now to move.”  — Jayeesha Dutta

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