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Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Let them play

I can't remember one single test answer I wrote.
But I remember,
Milk and cookies,
I remember singing "Rain, Rain Go Away The Kindergarten Wants To Play",
I remember a million moments in gym,
I remember day dreaming my life away in the books we read,
I remember the school yard play ground,
Hand ball,
Jump rope, 
I remember those rhythms of the beats we sang every day,
I remember walking, running, climbing, jumping, and talking my way to school. 
I remember catching snowflakes in my mouth in the school yard, 
I remember Ms. Gitter singing "Don't rain on my parade" and "Getting to know you",
I remember Mr. Bass turning out the lights, pulling the blinds down, and reading "Sleepy Hallow,"
I am sure I learn a millions things, but it's the play that taught me:
To Share,
To take turns,
To say excuse me,
To listen to everyone,
To help others,
To respect everyone.
It's the play people. It's the play that teaches us what we need most. I have a Ph.D. in Reading, Language, and Culture, and in my professional opinion nothing is as important to learning than play.
Dear Next President, it's the play not the testing that grows the mind.
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

If you like to know what song I was listening to on my walk this morning....its Whitney Houston's "The Greatest Love Of All"

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Secretary King, I am tired of Justice Is Coming Someday

United States Secretary of Education came to Trinity Magnet School in Hartford Connecticut today. He came to say Hartford's network of magnet schools in Connecticut can serve as a model for achieving the kind of diversity that is lacking in too many American schools, Funny how his visit came while schools were on summer break. If he just waited another two weeks....Well you can read all about it in this link.

My response to Secretary King's Visit. 

Dear Secretary of Education John King, I heard you visited one of our Hartford Connecticut Magnet Schools this week. It must be nice to cherry pick your visits. I noticed you failed to stop by Governor Malloy's office to suggest Connecticut cease fighting Connecticut's obligation to fully fund our poor schools. Well, you don't want to rock that Equity Someday Boat. Of course as always equity is never on the agenda.

This trip was about that desegregation is coming someday train. Magnets and Charters are coming to save some children of color. Hold on children, the United States Department of Education doesn't do all children. Some works nicely in twenty-first century America. Secretary King, Magnet Schools like Charter Schools always leave a majority of Black and Brown children racially isolated. That segregation someday train also seems to end in inequity for the majority of children of color left behind in their local public schools.

My thinking is you Washington DC policy makers, and our nation's legislators could use a little history lesson. The 1954 Brown Vs the Board of Education decision did not say compromise your way to desegregation. So three years later when Arkansas Governor Orval Faubus call out the national guard to stop the Little Rock Nine from integrating their public schools. President Dwight D. Eisenhower's (1957) signed Executive Order 10730 placing the Arkansas National Guard under his control to ensure the safety of the Little Rock Nine, and ordered they protect the Little Rock Nine. Perhaps somehow in the twisted minds of Ed Reformer revisionist history you think Executive Order 10730 was President Eisenhower's way of saying Governor Orval Faubus take your time desegregating those "Little Rock" Public schools. I bet Governor Faubus would love today's Ed Reform no rush we'll get there someday people. It is so much more civil than Eisenhower's Federal Marshals and National Guard troops on your school house steps.

America, we'll start with a few Magnet and Charter School plans. After all we have only been at it for 10, 20, 30 years. Hold on children be patient change is coming. Just not today. Meanwhile, no one at the United States Department of Education appears to mind 49 states spending more money on their wealthy schools than their poor schools.

Mr Secretary, Black and Brown children don't need desegregation someday. They need it today. Just like poor children of all colors don't need equity someday. They need it today.
I have a word for desegregation and equity today. It's call JUSTICE.
Not buying your desegregation someday compromises,
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

If you want to listen to the song this Walking Man is listening's Playing for Change singing that old Sam Cook song A Change Is Gonna Come"

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Live the life you sing about in your heart

I've heard some say the world has gone mad, it's unfair, it's unjust, and it's cruel. There isn't anything we can do to change it. The wealthy, the powerful, and connected have rigged the game. Goodness has been silenced. But, then what do I do with this song of change in my heart? Victor Hugo wrote in Les Misérables: “Not being heard is no reason for silence.”

Trust me the only chains on a better world is our silence and apathy.
I say, stand up, shout, march, and live that song in your heart.
Momma loved Mahalia Jackson. Mahalia was her church.
Hush everyone, Mahalia is on....Church came in songs with Momma.

" I'm gonna live the life
I sing about in my song
I'm gonna stand for right and
I always shun the wrong
If I'm in the crowd,
If I'm alone,
On the streets,
Or in my home...

I'm gonna live the life,
I sing about in my song"

Trump Hate is showcased everyday on TV,
Muslim, hispanic immigrants, and Americans of Color bullied everyday on Fox TV,
Unarmed Black boys and girls die everyday without out even a I'm Sorry,
Mayors, Governors, and legislative puppets cut school budgets, and close public schools, and give billions to the Hedge Fund boys to open new Private Charter Schools no one wants,
Leaders saying the bank is broke,
Go away you throw away mill workers, steel workers, and blue collar boys and girls,
No more art, music or play for poor boys and girls,
We ain't got a dime,
Can I get another Amen for Tax Cuts for the rich,

Maybe you can stay silent, but me I'm living the life I sing about as loud as I can.
Still singing that justice song I hear in my heart,
Jesse The Walking Man Turner

If you like to listen to the song I'm singing on my walk to today. Its...That version of Momma's favorite Mihalia song "I gonna live the life I sing about by The Last Internationals.