They will be there!

Members from the Yorktown Congress of Teachers recently received the gift of a chocolate bar from their local union.

Here’s a photo of the front of a special wrapper for the candy bar.

On the back is the following message:

The YCT will join with our brothers and sisters from all over New York state in Albany to put an end to the demonizing of teachers, the exploitation of our students as data-makers, and the relentless attacks on public education. We will never be able to out-spend the corporate lobbyists who have turned our schools into their personal cash cows, but we can, we do and we will continue to outnumber them. We are a force to be reckoned with. And it’s time we made them reckon with us.


It included a letter from senior building representative Janine Gibney urging them to rally with NYSUT on June 8 in Albany. Gibney knows that many June commitments are made months, even years, in advance, so in the letter she writes:

“If you can’t make the rally, please return the button but keep the candy bar as my gift. But perhaps then you can work instead to support your colleagues who are going — make a rally sign, offer to take their kids for the day on June 8, thank them when you see them wearing the button.”

Kudos to Gibney for thoughtfully including those folks who can’t come to Albany.

Sean Kennedy, president of the local that you might recall from this blog post for increasing awareness of workers rights, said the rally is sorely needed to give a physical presence in Albany of the thousands who are upset with the state’s obsession with testing, who want fair and equitable funding of schools and public higher education, to protect the safety of students and staff and to restore local control.

“It’s up to every NYSUT member to do what he or she can to get to Albany,” Kennedy said. “Our union gave candy bars but we are not sugarcoating the message that our public schools and our profession are under attack. NYSUT is only as strong as its weakest members and we have got to show up in force on June 8. We will be there!”

The pledge to be there, whether it’s on a t-shirt, the cover of NYSUT United or spoken through the telephone, often reminds me of the end of The Confrontation song sung in full deep-throated grandeur from “Les Miserables.”

Here’s what I mean (the message should start at 2:04.)

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