By Jay Behrke
NEWBURGH – Tyrone Crabb Park – itself a just three-year-old symbol of rebirth in a city newly committed to rebuilding its infrastructure – was an appropriate site for the ceremonial part of Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools [AROS]: A Day of Action Walk-In event. Parents, students, educators and politicians joined forces at the park, just up the hill from Horizons on the Hudson, then continued into the school for a breakfast with the principal.
“It’s not enough to just have the lights on, and a desk to sit at,” said Supervisor Dr. Roberto Padilla of the Newburgh Enlarged Central School System. “This morning’s rally is a call for additional support. Without your efforts, we could not accomplish the critical work of nurturing and educating our students.”
“The future of public education in our city, state and nation stands at a crossroads,” said President Stacy Moran of the Newburgh Teachers’ Association. “Now, more than ever, all of our children – all of our children – need access to good public schools.”
This is the third national walk-in organized by the alliance, with Newburgh joining fellow state sites Cortland, Dehli, Hoosick Falls, Massena, Morrisville, New York City, Potsdam, Rocky Point, and Syracuse. Earlier this year, 33 cities participated in national walk-ins on February 17 and May 4.
And this, from the AROS website: “As public schools are increasingly threatened by a view of education that supports privatization, zero-tolerance discipline policies, less funding, and high-stakes standardized tests, AROS is fighting back with a broad vision of American public education that prioritizes racial justice, equity and well-resourced, world-class, public community schools. ”