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We previously exposed two Alinsky IAF affiliates in the Mesa Unified School District. One is the Mesa Education Association and the other is the MESPA (Mesa Education Support Personnel for the Mesa Public Schools).
There appears to be yet another IAF affiliate in our Public education system. This time, it is in the Kyrene School District in Tempe.
The Kyrene Education Association
The current president is Erin Kirchoff. On her Facebook page, she is a fan of groups such as:
Moveon.org, AZ Working Families, 1 million strong against Michele Bachmann, Arizona Progress, Obama for America-Arizona, One Voice Community Center, ONE Community, Barack Obama, Terry Goddard, Kyrsten Sinema, Ed Ableser, David Schapira, NoH8 Campaign, Center for Progressive Leadership (traning course that Raquel Teran and Lilia Alvarez attended. Board members include Progressives Kyrsten Sinema and Chad Campbell), AZ Democrat party, Human Rights Campaign.
Also, according to their meeting minutes, they received a visit from the lead organizer of the IAF Valley Interfaith Project affiliate, Joe Rubio in January 2010. He “emphasized the necessity of all people who care about education to become involved in the effort to educate the electorate on the history of Arizona’s decline in education funding”.
You get the picture.
Within the KEA is a Human and Civil Rights Committee. It is headed by Kinora Hernandez. The mission statement says the committee is
…comprised of Kyrene teachers who are passionate about
making sure ALL students and staff in Kyrene are treated fairly
and with respect.
The committee develops policies and activities to support our strategic objective to advance racial, economic,
and gender equity in Kyrene schools.
The committee sponsors two events each year.
1. National “mix it up day”
It sounds like a nice idea. Except for the fact that it implies that our children are incapable of making friends and good choices on their own and that all children are inherently bullies.
“Mix it up day” is sponsored by Tolerance.org which was founded by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
Tolerance.org sounds so…very…tolerant. Their mission statement:
“Dedicated to reducing prejudice, improving intergroup relations,
and supporting equitable school experiences for our nation’s children.”
They include teaching kits for teachers which are geared towards specific grade levels. These kits include subjects such as:
American Civil Rights Movement: A Time for Justice
Bullied: A Student, A School, and a Case That Made History
(a documentary film that chronicles one student’s ordeal at the hands of anti-gay bullies. It can become a cornerstone of anti-bullying efforts in middle and High School.)
Viva La Causa
(The Delano strike and grape boycott led by Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta)
2. “No Name Calling” Week
In an agenda for the KEA, they discussed ideas on how to incorporate “no name calling” into the curriculum. Ideas they came up with included:
Do something simple: Have students sign No Name-calling Pledge sheets or wear stickers to pledge that they will not bully (basically, teachers bully kids into pledging they won’t be bullies)
Social Studies: Have students generate a survey about bullying and administer their survey to a specific number of students in the school.
Math: Create math problems. For example, If 15% of the students in a class of 27 do not come to school because they fear they will be bullied while at school, how many students would be missing?
Language Arts: Write poems, narratives and enter in the Creative Impressions Contest sponsored by nonamecalling.org
Art: Create pieces that reflect feelings generated by bullying. Enter in the Creative Impressions Contest sponsored by nonamecalling.org.
Who is nonamecalling.org?
Their sponsors include:
Amnesty International, Anti-defamation league, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, Colage – Children of Lesbian and Gays Everywhere, Girl Scouts of the USA, Jewish Mosaic-the National Center for Sex and Gender Diversity, National Conference for Community and Justice, NEA, National Urban League, OUThistory.org, Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, Planned Parenthood Federation of America.
Based on the meeting minutes, the focus of the KEA is to promote Democrats in elections (like Penny Kotterman, David Schapira), encourage teachers and others to vote for every bond override proposal and education money-focused Propositions (like Prop 100), support continued funding for all day kindergarten, any legislative actions that affect teachers, teacher salaries and days off for sick time or vacations.
What about the children?