Power of Ten Update
In this edition:
  1. Rally TODAY at Ramapo High School regarding school safety
  2. Nyack group organizes to restore education funding
  3. How to help with the May 15 election
  4. Message from the editor
1)Rally TODAY at Ramapo HS regarding school safety

The East Ramapo PTA has requested that the School Board President’s address security concerns in our public schools. The complaint is that individuals frequently walk through / trespass on school grounds during school hours, while children are at recess or in class. These individuals, when asked to leave by faculty and Administrators, do not heed the warnings and refuse to leave. To date,the School Board President has not formally responded to the PTA complaint. The Superintendent has publically stated that he has observed trespassers but has not proposed any action to resolve the problem.

The press conference and protest rally will be at Ramapo HS, on Friday, May 4th at 3:30 pm

2) Nyack group organizes to restore education funding
Restore Education Funding (REF) is a group of parents in the Nyack/Valley Cottage school district working hard to make our legislators understand the impact of their action (or inaction) on our kids.
They have organized a petition drive focused on increased education funding and decreased standardized testing. They are also working with groups throughout NYS on a boycott of the upcoming field tests

They will hold an open forum and planning meeting:
Wed., May 9th from 7:30-9:00 pm
Living Christ Church, 151 South Broadway in Nyack:
Nyack Superintendent Dr. Montesano will speak and answer questions about the scope of tests to be expected in schools throughout NYS in the 2012/2013 school year as a result of Federal and State mandates

3) How to help with the May 15 Election
Are you doing everything you can do to help with the election? Of course you can spread the word to your contacts, neighbors, etc. What else can you do? Here are some ideas:
  1. Go to www.poweroften.us and sign up for the online phone bank. Start making calls, right from home!
  2. Get a list of voters in your area and pay them a visit. It can be a very enriching experience to have a meaningful conversation with your neighbors about the value of public education. Email Michael Miller at miller66@optonline.net to volunteer for the Get out the Vote effort.
  3. Donate to the campaign at www.ccoer.com
  4. Help on election day! Call 845 354 5809 or email at concernedcitizensofeastramapo@gmail.com for info on how to help!
4) Message from the editor
I would like to take just a moment to thank all of you who read these messages and all of those who have written to me over the years. We have done so much more than just electing school board members and increasing voter turnout. We have made a large portion of our community aware of the importance of public educational institutions in our life as a community. We have created a sense of ownership. We have highlighted the common responsibility to the children. We have emphasized with bold print and headlines that our common hope for a brighter future depends on what we teach our children and HOW we teach our children. The model of “I got mine and too bad for you” has served humanity very poorly. The ability to win an election is a responsibility, not a prize. The East Ramapo School system is being run by folks who do not care about the education of the children. They do not consider the residents of East Ramapo to be one community- the result is increased segregation in housing patterns and educational institutions in our district. East Ramapo, which had once been a model of diversity, a veritable United Nations of school districts, has now become a model of segregation and polarization. For a while, they tried to pass this new arrangement off as a different kind of diversity. But as sure as the night follows the day, domination follows segregation, arrogance follows power, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. And so we cannot be silent. We will protest when they hire lawyers at triple the price while laying off teachers. We will protest when they close schools while enrollment grows and classes become overcrowded. We will protest each time they favor one group and snub another, because that is not what democracy is about. Please do everything you can to help the Concerned Citizens of East Ramapo win the election on May 15, but also please be aware that you are doing very much more as you work to promote the values of education, community, and diversity. We are one people, that is a truth too often denied, but it remains a truth nevertheless. – Steve White, editor

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