NC HEAT Plans Second Annual March

flier smaller fileAs part of Dignity in School’s National Week of Action Against School Pushout, NC HEAT (Heroes Emerging Among Teens) and the Youth Organizing Institute are calling for a MARCH & SPEAK-OUT against the School-to-Prison pipeline.

This is the Second Annual march, led by NC HEAT members.

The march will start with a speak out at Washington Elementary in Raleigh (1000 Fayetteville St.) and proceed to Central Prison for a demonstration with music, drums and raised voices!

Bring friends, signs and noisemakers, and WEAR YOUR BACKPACKS! Show up to push back against school pushouts!

 

Youth Grill Wake School Board Candidates on Discipline Issues

Sept 10, 2013: Wake School Board Candidate Forum in Cary, NC

Sept 10, 2013: NC HEAT members line up to ask questions at Wake School Board Candidate Forum in Cary, NC

On Monday, September 9, seven NC HEAT members attended the Cary Candidate forum located at Covenant Christian church, to ask perspective school board members the questions about the epidemic of suspensions and racial disparities in school discipline practices.   NC HEAT members used data-driven research to generate thought-provoking questions to encourage candidates to discuss their vision for how to address the school-to-prison pipeline in Wake County.

NC HEAT members highlighted that data shows that youth of color and disabled youth are suspended and pushed out of public schools at a rates alarmingly higher than their white, non-special needs counterparts.  Perspective candidates Nancy Caggia and Bill Fetcher seemed unable or unprepared to adequately address these policies issues.  Both candidates stated that they would not support a Moratorium on Out-of-School Suspensions.  After hearing the research and questions presented by NC HEAT members, NC HEAT hopes that the candidates will consider working more closely with students and communities to solve our school discipline crisis and create policies that treat every student, regardless of race, gender, gender presentation, ability, or sexual orientation with dignity.

Youth Join Dream Defenders

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Youth from the Youth Organizing Institute, NC HEAT, and the North Carolina Student Power Union organized a caravan to Florida to join the Dream Defenders. The Dream Defenders are occupying the state capital building!

As we joined the occupation yesterday history was  made as it was the first time ever enough letters were received to trigger a vote for a special session. The session will review stand your ground laws.

Go to dreamdefenders.com for more information

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Youth lead march to Governor

witnessWedTwo days after the June 24 “Moral Monday,” youth in NC called for an action to raise their issues. The action was called “Witness Wednesday.”  NC HEAT leaders Q and Beatrice addressed the crowd at a press conference before a march to the Governor’s office. They demanded an end to the criminalization of youth and for fully funded quality education.

They spoke about legislation aimed at lowering the age to 13 when youth could be tried as adults, and spoke against privatization and the school voucher bill. The racist criminal injustice system that disproportionately incarcerates youth of color must be stopped. While the mobilizations on the state-wide level are continuing, NC HEAT is building a coalition around challenging police in schools and ending racist discipline practices.

Youth Mobilize for “Moral Monday”

ImageSince April 29, members of NC HEAT have come out for weekly “Moral Mondays.”  On June 24 thousands of people from across the state gathered.  Over 120 people participating in non-violent civil disobedience.  The reactionary policies being proposed include massive cuts to education, a school voucher plan, refusing the Federal Medicaid Expansion, and cutting unemployment benefits. NC HEAT will continue to raise youth demands, tell their stories, and be in solidarity every Moral Monday.

Nationwide Fight Against School Push Out

no peace with a peaceThe School-to-Prison Pipeline is a national issue and requires creating a national fightback. The Dignity in Schools Campaign is helping local organizations coordinate and develop their campaigns to end this pipeline.  Here are some of the recent victories, including in Wake County, NC.

DSC Members Win Community Involvement in School Resource Officer Training for Wake County Schools

North Carolina – On June 4, students with DSC member organizations NC HEAT/Youth Organizing Institute and the Education Justice Alliance, together with the Coalition of Concerned Parents of African American Children, attended the Wake County Public School System Board meeting to address the overuse of harsh discipline practices and arrests at the hands of School Resource Officers (SROs).

Click the link below to read the full story:

http://www.dignityinschools.org/blog/dsc-members-win-community-involvement-school-resource-officer-training-wake-county-schools

DSC Members Celebrate Victory in Los Angeles

On Tuesday, May 14, DSC members CADRE, Public Counsel Law Center, Labor/Community Strategy Center, and Children’s Defense Fund-California working with the Brothers, Sons, Selves Coalition of Los Angeles on the Every Student Matters Campaign celebrated a groundbreaking victory when the Los Angeles Unified School Board approved a School Climate Bill of Rights that: bans suspensions for willful defiance; calls for stepped up implementation of School-Wide Positive Behavior Support and for the first time Restorative Justice; makes discipline, citation, and school arrest data available to students and parents; and clarifies the role of police in schools.

Click the link below for the full story:

http://www.dignityinschools.org/blog/dsc-members-celebrate-victory-los-angeles

D.O.E. Holds Annual Discipline Code Public Hearing

Charlotte Pope, Dignity in Schools Campaign – New York, 06/10/2013dsc main graphic

A chant of “Solutions not suspensions” echoed through the Stuyvesant High School auditorium Thursday evening, where a crowd largely made up of youth leaders assembled for the Department of Education’s annual hearing on the Discipline Code.

Click the link below for the full story:

http://www.dignityinschools.org/blog/doe-holds-annual-discipline-code-public-hearing

Now accepting applications for Summer 2013 Youth Organizing Institute

**APPLY TODAY BY FILLING OUT THE ONLINE APPLICATION**

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Calling Triangle-Area Teens:  Work this summer to stop racism & school re-segregation, challenge the school to prison pipeline, and make schools safe for LBGTQ youth (and get paid!).

The Institute will take place on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from July 9-25, with one overnight retreat. 

Entering its fourth year the Youth Organizing Institute is committed to training, supporting, and developing the next generation of activists, organizers, and social change leaders in North Carolina.

Applications are due June 7.

What is the Youth Organizing Institute:

We are youth organizers. We are immigrants and we are US born. We are white, black, and brown. We speak many languages. We are gay and we are straight. We believe in solidarity, we support each other, and we affirm the humanity and dignity of every person. We do not believe in “problem kids.” We believe society has problems and we must be the ones to fix them. We believe in hard work and we believe in fun. We are loyal to each other and dedicated to our values. We got your back. We believe that five fingers clutched together are stronger than each finger on its own.

We honor the legacies of the youth organizers and activists who came before us. We walk in the legacy of SNCC (Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee). We believe in collective direct action.

We are part of a broad, dynamic, diverse, and international student movement.

COMMITMENTS – YOURS AND OURS

Teens accepted into the program must complete 50 hours of classroom & field work.
Sessions will be Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from July 9 – July 25, plus one weekend.

Participants who successfully complete the program will receive a certificate and a $100 stipend.