Reading, Writing, and Walk Outs: New York Schools Brace for Mass Protest

A massive walkout in New York schools is planned for today in support of a ceasefire in Gaza.  Chancellor David Banks is being accused of threatening teachers about the protest and warning that they may be subject to discipline in some circumstances. The school system appears in a muddle given its past support for walkouts. My interest in the controversy is not the merits of the ceasefire but the incomprehensible policy being enforced by school officials in choosing what protests they will support.

flyer for the event advertised “100+ high schools and school communities” will be joining the mass demonstration with the participation of many teachers.

I previously criticized the school system for its biased approach toward supporting certain protests while opposing others. For example, the New York school system previously gave 1.1 million students leave to join protests on climate change. At the time, I asked if the school officials would show equal support for other protests or whether they were simply encouraging protests that they supported.

The response to this protest is clearly different from the enthusiastic support given past protests. Banks sent a warning to teachers who will be joining this protest that they can face discipline if it “disrupts … the school environment.” He also noted that “when speech and action — even on one’s personal time — undermines the mission or core functions of NYCPS, we will review and take appropriate action on a case-by-case basis.”

While the Education Department insisted that the warning was not directed at this protest, Tajh Sutton, a Brooklyn parent and president of Community Education Council 14, which is co-sponsoring the Thursday walkout, said that it is clear that the warning was meant to discourage teachers on the eve of the walkout.

The different treatment given protests raises concerns over content-based discrimination. It is reminiscent of the approach of National Public Radio.

NPR announced previously that reporters could participate in activities that advocate for “freedom and dignity of human beings” on social media and in real life. The rule states in part:

“NPR editorial staff may express support for democratic, civic values that are core to NPR’s work, such as, but not limited to: the freedom and dignity of human beings, the rights of a free and independent press, the right to thrive in society without facing discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity, disability, or religion.”

The rule itself shows how impressionistic and unprofessional media has become in the woke era. NPR does not try to define what causes constitute advocacy for the “freedom and dignity of human beings.” How about climate change and environmental protection? Would it be prohibited to protest for a forest but okay if it is framed as “environmental justice”?

NPR seems to intentionally keep such questions vague while only citing such good causes as Black Lives Matter and gay rights:

“Is it OK to march in a demonstration and say, ‘Black lives matter’? What about a Pride parade? In theory, the answer today is, “Yes.” But in practice, NPR journalists will have to discuss specific decisions with their bosses, who in turn will have to ask a lot of questions.”

So the editors will have the power to choose between acceptable and unacceptable causes.

The New York school system seems to apply the same approach in actively supporting some walkouts while discouraging others.

177 thoughts on “Reading, Writing, and Walk Outs: New York Schools Brace for Mass Protest”

  1. They had their opportunity to call for a ceasefire of the rockets that have screamed overhead in Israel for many years. Yet now their mouths loudly call for a ceasefire. Before there was such a thing as the Iron Dome the rockets were finding the targets. Then, the sounds of feet marching on the street were the sound of one foot marching. There no longer is a need for the mincing of words. They are teaching that which is evil.

  2. In my humble opinion, this is the reason that the NEA should be defunded, and unions being prevented from operating within local, state, and federal school systems. “Protests,” “Walk-Outs,” and soap box politics should not be allowed to influence children / students in schools. Political opinions that are designed to sway children from one political view to another is not education, it is indoctrination. Parents trust teachers to teach their children the basic fundamentals of reading, math, science, history, civility, and how to reflect with respect to both sides of a political situation when questioned by students without bitterness or hate toward one belief over another. People are already overly influenced by main stream media and programs designed to sway public opinion. Politically backed unions that encourage teacher walk outs on televised issues should not be a required course in education. If parents want their children to walk out of anything, it should be any school that permits or endorses such behavior. Teachers can protest on their own time, and not on the taxpayers’ dime.

  3. I am sure that I’m preaching to the choir; anyone that follows Mr. Turley is most likely up on current events.
    I would like to suggest a short video featuring Douglas Murry on the state of Israel and Hamas. You can find it on next by way of citizenfreepress.
    It may be a point to introduce relatives to current events.

  4. “. . . a ceasefire in Gaza.”

    That means: Give Islamic terrorists (Hamas) time to regroup. And Iran time to rearm them.

    If your goal is to eradicate those who invaded your country and butchered its citizens, suicide is not a good policy.

    1. Right, if the “kids” want to do this…maybe it’s time to show them the hard reality of what Hamas did on October 7. Show them about the man who is so HAPPY and PROUD that he killed 10 Jews, that he had to call home and brag….Or the beheading of a soldier with a shovel, then go out and protest.

  5. Advocacy in education can be a complex field, but it’s heartening to see students and teachers engaging in dialogue around issues they’re passionate about. Finding a balance in supporting different causes can be a challenging task for any institution. Let’s hope for open discussions and positive outcomes for everyone involved.

    1. Is there a dialogue happening here? I don’t think walking out of school to chant slogans or anything else happening here would qualify as a dialogue.

      1. My God! Home school your child. Schools are a breeding ground for stupidity. Exactly the opposite of their intent.

    2. The purpose of public education is not to support any political cause, but to teach literacy, math, science, and history. Public schools are failing at all of these subjects, and they have cut funding for arts and music, studies that produce a well-rounded mind.

      Political advocacy has no place in public schools. Inevitably, teachers and administrators over whelminging favor and encourage Democratic political beliefs, while discouraging or harassing any other views. My own 13 year old has told me that his public school taught that Islam had nothing to do with the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and that Christians sallied forth on the Crusades for no reason, ignoring the Muslim expansion throughout the Middle East, putting Christians to the sword, into Europe, and the enslavement of Christians. The misrepresentation of world history has led to public school students to take such ignorant positions as Jews are colonizers in Israel, when they are actually indigenous to the area, and are persecuted.

      Students can protest on their own time. Perhaps schools would be better served if they abandoned politics, and debunked literacy programs like Blended Learning, and focused on proven methods to improve reading proficiency.

      Schools are producing graduates who can attend a rally, and view anyone who disagrees with biologically inaccurate pronouns as a threat, but they harass Jewish people, support the gang raping, murderous thugs of Hamas, and do not know how to research, read, or comprehend the history of Israel and Judea.

      1. Current public education in America only cares about these things. 1. Kids need to graduate with a clinical case of generalized anxiety due to climate change. 2. Men can become women and actually give birth. 3. All conservatives are evil and the root of all of your problems. When you look at what is happening in education through that lens, it all makes sense.
        In Wisconsin, proficiency in math and English was about 87% in 2000. What is it now? 37%. What is it in Milwaukee Public Schools? 7%. What changed? Progressive democrats went from a polite majority to a radical monopoly of all teachers, administrators, and members of Department of Public Instruction .

    3. Definition of passion: complete lack of logical and rational thought and action, i.e., lack of open discussion and positive outcomes. Ever try to reason with an idiot when they’re screaming at you?

    4. That would be a nice concept if it actually happened. In Public education, the dialogue is overwhelmingly one sided with progressive view points and straw man characterizations of conservative view points. Actual honest debate is shouted down.
      In the case of Israel, how do you have an honest debate? Hamas and their supporters rejoice at savage acts where they literally targeted women, children, and other civilians. Then they ignore all Geneva rules by having their military structures within or under hospitals, schools, and mosques. Then complain when those areas are attacked. Or they keep themselves surrounded by civilians on purpose then scream about so called atrocities when they are the ones keeping innocent people in harms way. I do use innocent loosely as there are few if any innocent Palestinians, including kids. When you rejoice the evil. When you spit on a corpse of an innocent woman who had been raped, tortured, and beheaded. Where exactly is the innocence? Make no mistake. If Hamas or any other Muslim militant group had the ability, they would go door to door in America and torture and kill every infidel. And they would smile and rejoice while doing so.

  6. The purpose of a school is to teach students literature, math, science, and history, tasks American schools have failed at. Public schools have no business indoctrinating students in politics, or encouraging truancy. Students can protest after school, if they feel the need.

    By getting involved in some public protests, they have set the precedent that such walkouts are fighting the good fight.

    Hamas is a Nazi movement. Many of us have warned about the growing antisemitism of the Left, but it has exploded with shocking vehemence.

    Jewish Democrats are flocking to gun stores with a sudden, growing appreciation for the Second Amendment, especially since they helped the Democratic Party defund police. How many pledged solidarity with BLM, even though BLM has openly supported Hamas since its inception?

    1. Thinking how commenters constantly claim Hamas are Nazis. Nazis are members of the National Socialists Workers party ( Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei – NSDAP), reduced to, in German, as Nationalsozialistin .i.e. “Nazis”, ideologues of German workers rights. They eventually it took a macabre turn when they empowered Jew hating megalomaniacs. Calling Hamas “Nazis” is too limiting in the extent of the evil and hate they and others Islamist entities: Iran, Afghanistan, Irak etc. propagate. Eventually it will become either them or us . Western Civilization must confront Islam at its core – the hate for everything non-Islam. Islam is evil incarnate, worse than anything the Germans did.

  7. A ceasefire would allow Hamas to regroup, move weapons around, and better position themselves to commit more terrorist acts. They have openly declared they will never stop committing genocide until all the Jews are dead.

    It is outrageous to demand that Israel stop fighting Hamas until that mass raping, pedophilia, kid killing Nazi organization is ash, and then the ashes burnt.

    Did we give the Nazis a ceasefire when we had the military advantage?

    We leveled parts of Afghanistan and spent the next couple,of decades there because 5 Saudis trained there with bin Laden to commit 9/11. If there were massive protests in support of bin Laden, anywhere near 9/11, it would have been received poorly.

    Hamas must be destroyed, its molecules exploded.

    The leaders of Hamas seized billions of dollars in aid that poured into Gaza, that was supposed to build a state of the art city. They sold part of it on the black market, kept vast amounts of money, and used the rest to commit terrorism. Hamas’ leadership are billionaires living pampered lives in Qatar, while Palestinians live in poverty, without that state of the art water and power system. They direct Hamas to use Palestinians as human shields, ordering them not to evacuate when Israel warns them to. They are sheep to slaughter, because their deaths gain up more Jew hatred. Yet, STILL, Palestinians vote for Hamas to run Gaza.

    I don’t know what deal with the devil Hamas made to get this kind of PR. One would think that using civilians as human shields, mass rape, mass pedophilia, would be met with global condemnation, yet Leftists seem to just love it. There are Queers for Palestine demonstrating for people who would murder them. Women who marched in women’s marches with genitalia hats because Trump made vulgar references to groupies, who now march in support of Hamas that raped women to death.

    Trump, the firmest supporter of Israel, was falsely accused of antisemitism for promoting a meme that Hillary Clinton, a Christian, belongs in jail. The Left now openly supports Hamas, whose rhetoric about killing all the Jews is I distinguishable from Nazis.

    It just defies comprehension. The dark sorcery of willful blindness on a scale of Germany in the 1930s.

    1. You are thoroughly correct….with one glaring exception: Hillary “Piano Legs” Clinton is NOT a Christian. On the contrary, she/it is a mentally-ill murderer.

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