New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE) is a group of public school educators committed to fighting for social justice in our school system and society at large, by organizing and mobilizing teachers, developing curriculum, and working with community, parent, and student organizations. We are educators who believe that education is an integral part of social change and that we must work both inside and outside the classroom because the struggle for justice does not end when the school bell rings.
Points of Unity
1. Racism and economic inequality in the school system reflect and perpetuate the systematic and historical oppression of people of color and working class communities. As educators in the New York City public school system we have a responsibility to address and challenge these forms of oppression.
2. In order to combat economic, social, and political systems that actively silence women and people of color, we are committed to maintaining majority women and people of color representation in our group.
3. We oppose the current policy of high stakes standardized testing because it reflects the standards and norms of dominant groups in society, it is an inaccurate and incomplete assessment of learning, and it stifles pedagogical innovation and active learning.
4. Punitive disciplinary measures such as “Zero Tolerance” further criminalize youth and are not an answer to crime and other social problems. We believe economic and social priorities should be toward education of young people and not incarceration.
5. We oppose the increased efforts of military recruitment in New York City public schools. These efforts unfairly target the recruitment of low-income communities and make false promises about educational and career opportunities. We believe that these efforts are an extension of an imperialistic strategy to maintain a powerful military force in order to protect and promote US world dominance.
6. New school funding policies must be adopted in order to ensure equitable resources for all. Current policies based upon property taxes discriminate against low-income communities and urban areas, which disproportionately affect people of color.
7. Schools must be safe spaces for females and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) individuals. Verbal and physical abuse targeting these groups is extremely prevalent in most schools, and cannot be tolerated and must be challenged by all faculty, staff, and administrators.
8. Schools should be places of questioning and critical thinking that encourage students to see themselves as active agents of change. The present educational system is derived from an assembly line model that stifles critical thinking by focusing on the regurgitation of facts and information.
9. Schools should provide a neighborhood space through which community voices are heard. Teachers are an integral part of this space and must be held accountable to the community by being involved in addressing community needs.