Pouring out hearts in pouring rain

valley stream activists

Photo by Jonathan Fickies

“It was cold and nasty, but it was an even greater tribute that people came out,” said Patrick Naglieri, president of the 1,200-member Valley Stream Teachers Association, of the Day of Action events held at 14 schools in the Long Island district.

“We held a demonstration of concern at every building,” he said. “People were out there in the pouring rain with blue and white umbrellas. They wore whatever they owned that was blue and water repellent!”

Teachers, students and parents — like thousands of others across the country — wore blue today to show unity in the quest to reclaim the promise: greater investment in public education, less teaching to the test, and a three-year moratorium on high-stakes consequences from state tests for both students and teachers. People said they’re blue over how schools are being hindered by poor and unequal funding. State and local budget cuts have led to the layoffs of art teachers, music teachers, language teachers, librarians and many other educators, losses that are taking the creativity out of learning.

The day-long weather forecast for the southwest Nassau County village of Valley Stream is rain, rain, rain. We know educators there will keep pouring out their pleas to reclaim the promise.

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