Day of inadequate Action

Flash back to March 4, 2010.

Last year’s Day of Action united students in all levels of the California education system.

People protested. Walk-outs took place statewide. Kindergarten through higher education students worked together to create a demonstration of outrage that  couldn’t be ignored. Nationwide, 23 states held events.

And the government took notice—at least for a minute.

For a while, the state was energized. Students were given hope that this fiscal year would be different.

But when it came time for the governor to sign the official budget, he didn’t. In fact, over 100 days went by before Republicans and Democrats could  agree on a final budget, and after all the debating, waiting and time-wasting, millions were again cut from education.

This year, even worse cuts threaten what little funding public education currently enjoys.

The CSUs face budget cuts of $500 million, yet the Day of Action has become a shadow of last year’s triumph.

After all the effort that went into making last year’s Day of Action a success and the ensuing budget mess, have we become disillusioned?

Last year’s valiant example of inclusion at all levels has not been duplicated. Yes, organizers are involving both the SF State and CCSF, but what about the 140 public schools in San Francisco?

Last year multiple meetings helped to expand and organize the movement. This year there was just one.

We cannot be discouraged by the poor quality budget balancing that California has fallen victim to. We cannot let ourselves become apathetic – a characteristic trait of our generation – when our own futures are at stake.

If we continue to let our government fail us, we will forever lose the promise of quality public education that California once boasted.

Let’s make this year’s Day of Action stand out by not letting the momentum fade when the drums and chants fall quiet, but instead by echoing our needs until they are met.

We need to work together, not just on one day, but every single day until Sacramento listens to our demands and implements strong strategies that protect and guarantee adequate funding for public education.

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