The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Sabrina Stevens Shupe, (732) 841-4967 or
Nancy Flanagan, (231) 228-6731

Momentum Builds for July 30 Save Our Schools March

Endorsements from Parents, Artists, and Civil Rights Groups


A rapidly growing list of organizations and prominent individuals has signed on to support the Saturday, July 30 "Save Our Schools" (SOS) march and rally in Washington, DC. Thousands of public education advocates will gather on the Ellipse at noon and then march around the White House to demonstrate dissatisfaction with "top-down reforms," which they say ignore local communities, reject proven research, and undermine both school quality and equity.

In addition to many education groups, SOS endorsers include Parents Across America, the United Church of Christ Justice and Witness Ministry, and the Plessy and Ferguson Foundation. Columbia Sociology Professor Pedro Noguera, author Jonathan Kozol and former Assistant Secretary of Education Diane Ravitch are among the scheduled speakers. Leaders of the film community, such as actors Matt Damon and Richard Dreyfuss, as well as Vicki Abeles, director of Race to Nowhere, also support the event.

Natalie Schwartz, a parent advocate and small business owner who serves on the SOS Executive Committee, explained, "The diversity of organizations and leaders endorsing the Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action reflects widespread frustration with failed education policies at both the federal and state levels. A decade of escalating focus on high-stakes tests and sanctions has narrowed curriculum and undermined academic quality for the very children 'No Child Left Behind' was meant to serve. Lawmakers need to start listening to the communities they were elected to serve. We must put an end to top-down policies that clearly do not work. It's time to reverse course."

The Save Our Schools March and National Call to Action is organized around four basic principles:

- Equitable Funding for All Public School Populations
- Ending High-Stakes Testing for Student, Teacher and School Evaluation
- Curriculum Developed For and By Local School Communities
- Public Education Policies Formed by Teachers, Families and Local Leadership

A full list of endorsers is online at: