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State of the Schools Second Line for Justice: March 13 at 4 p.m.

2ndLineforJusticeLogoHow can we improve the working and learning conditions in New Orleans schools for workers and students? A recent report answers this question. Its findings will be released to the community on March 13.

(March 5, 2013 – NEW ORLEANS) — “State of the Schools” is an action research report complete with recommendations that answers the question: How can we improve the working and learning conditions in New Orleans schools for workers and students?

Over the course of three months, a team of action researchers composed of former and current New Orleans school service workers – cafeteria workers and custodians – as well as New Orleans public school students came together for a participatory action research (PAR) project.

The PAR project developed from the need to investigate the impact decentralization is having in the schools by the two groups most impacted by the changes: the workers and the students they serve.

This intergenerational group, ranging in age from 9 to 74, created surveys, gathered data, analyzed findings; and as a result, came up with five solid policy recommendations to improve services. These findings are aimed at all 45 New Orleans school boards and will be released to the community during the March 13 event.

“One of the main reasons I signed up to be an action researcher is because I have children who attend Orleans public schools and I want the best education and learning environments for them,” said Jumal Otis, a seven-year food service worker in the Recovery School District. “I’m working to help all students and workers get the right pay and supplied needed so they can have better lives.”

Both Otis and her 11-year-old son, Carl served on the PAR team.

The second line will start at 4 p.m. at the Recovery School District’s new office located at 1615 Poydras St. and travel to the steps of City Hall, 1300 Perdido St.    Music will be provided by TBC Brass Band and the Messy Cookers. Free food will be served at City Hall. School leaders, both charter and traditional, will be attending to support.

The one-page summary of the report is currently available. The report in its entirety will be made available after the event. For more information, contact Jewel Bush at (225) 454-3853 or jewel.bush@seiu21la.org.

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