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The following is a letter in solidarity drafted by Rethinking Schools editors and staff:
Dear Seattle Education Association,
Rethinking Schools editors and staff express our solidarity as you go on strike for better schools for your students along with their families and for just compensation and working conditions for your members. We have followed your negotiations carefully and we know that this is a strike for justice.
• As Seattle has become one of the country’s most expensive cities, you have gone six years without so much as a cost of living increase and with no increase in educator health care.
• You’ve been assaulted by standardized testing, which distorts the curriculum and robs students of essential instructional time. Students are not even guaranteed recess by the Seattle school district.
• You are straining under enormous workloads, which results in students who cannot get the attention they deserve, and over-worked and exhausted educators and support staff.
• You’ve noted unequal discipline policies and procedures that have led to vast racial disparities that need to be addressed immediately, in every building.
Seattle educators have said “Enough!” You have bargained in good faith and now are striking for your members, for your students, for the broader community—and, really, for people everywhere who are working for vital public schools and social justice.
Rethinking Schools thanks you for your vision and for your sacrifice. We will continue to spread the word about your important struggle and do everything we can to help you win.