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Alternative Spring Break 2013-2014 - Growing Roses in Concrete: Fighting for Educational Justice

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Trip Name: 
Growing Roses in Concrete: Fighting for Educational Justice
Trip Location: 
Bay Area, CA
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Trip Description: 

Schools in the United States are more segregated today than they have been in more than four decades. Black and Hispanic students populate high-poverty schools more than any other minority. One in three minority students (32 percent) attend a dropout factory. 68 Percent of all males in state and federal prison did not graduate high school. Only 34 percent of low-income students actually enroll in college. Of that 34 percent, only 11 percent graduate. These symptoms of a broken system have received a lot of popular media attention, and the recent past has seen many proposed solutions to this national crisis.

But these solutions need to address more than just the symptoms. Students and schools are more than just statistics - they are communities that are central to the fight for educational justice. Grassroots community organizing offers an urgently needed alternative to traditional approaches to educational reform. The goal of community organizing for educational justice is to work with - not just on behalf of - low-income and communities of color to increase the power of these residents to speak and act for themselves, while simultaneously addressing the larger societal systems that have helped produce these failing schools.  

The goal of our trip is to explore the power of community organizing as a lens to strengthen the fight for educational justice. What larger societal and economic systems affect our education system? What has history shown us about the power of community organizing? How can art be used to challenge the educational system? What role do teachers, schools, and policy-makers play in fighting for educational justice? What does educational justice community organizing look like in the Bay Area? Explore with us. 

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