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Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Rosa Parks second refusal inspries me to walk again

Below is a link to a story from my 2010 walk. The song remains the same...I reject the notion that testing and standards are replacements for equity in our public schools.

Rosa Parks in her autobiography we find Rosa had a prior encounter with James Blake, the bus driver who demanded she vacate her seat.
In 1943, Blake had ejected Parks from his bus after she refused to re-enter the vehicle through the back door after paying her fare at the front. She wrote “I never wanted to be on that man’s bus again,” in her autobiography, but Rosa got back on James Blake's bus in 1955, and he had her arrested, but her act of civic disobedience launch the movement that changed America. With Rosa's spirit I am putting these walking shoes back on. Rosa inspires me, drives, me, and lifts me up. This story is from my 2010 walk. Trust me in 2015 this second walk is going to crash through those Ed Deformer walls. Can't wait until June
One man walking to DC in the name of love,

Sunday, March 22, 2015

We can speak up, stand up and act. We have Ethan's shinning north star to guide parents and teachers

We can speak up, stand up, and act, or we can be silent, apathetic, and miserable. I chose to act.  
Marinanne Williamson wrote in A Return To Love: “Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do”
A year ago Andrea Pratt Rediske opened her mother's heart to the world. She shared the power of god's light by sharing Ethan's story. The State of Florida insisted on testing Ethan even in Hospice care. It was act of pure evil, but Andrea's response was a mother's act of pure love. She not only spoke up, stood up, and advocated for Ethan, but for all children with special needs. She share Ethan's talents,they were giant, beyond anything that any test could ever measure. Most of all she shared his brilliant, gorgeous, fabulous love of life. 
Ethan's life inspired parents and chidden all over America. I dream of 50 Ethan laws in 50 states. Ethan pointed the way for us dreamers. Ethan life was anything, but inadequate. His life was powerful, meaningful, and beautiful. Far too big to fit within their tiny testing bubble. 
Ethan's life is God's reminder that all children are gifts, all children are love, and should be loved. I find my walking to DC again in the name of love. Although I never meet Ethan or Andrea Pratt Rediske I have felt their love, and love wins people not numbers, not data, no proficiency levels.
Thank you Ethan for blessing our lives.
I am one man walking in the name of love to DC with a picture of one extraordinary Ethan Pratt Rediske in my wallet. You Ethan are my north start shinning brightly. 

If you like to know what the Walking listened to on his walk this cold morning? It's Demi Lovato's Skyscraper 

Monday, February 23, 2015

I have a bell, I have a hammer, and two feet made for walking.

Shout on every corner,

I am one man walking in the name of love to DC,

Shout it in every Church, Synagogue, Temple, and Masque,

Shout it in the halls of congress,

Shout it in the senate,

Shout it outside the White House,   

That silence and apathy have no hold on me,

Ring every bell,

Tell it on every mountaintop,

Unlike our nation's Hedge Fund managers, this walking man is not afraid our children won't be able to compete,

Tell every child, parent, and teacher,
I see a brighter day coming,

Tell them I am walking to help America understand that it is immoral for 49 states to spend more money on their wealthy schools than their poor schools.

Tell everyone I am walking 400 miles to break that deafening silence coming from our United States Department of Education's immoral policies hiding a public school system rooted in inequality,

Tell everyone I am walking for every child, teacher, and parent being blamed for the failures of our leadership to do the right thing,

Shout it loud and clear, this man is walking for our children and every teacher being labeled failure, 
This man is walking, because Washington DC lacks the moral will to give every child an equal start and equal finish.

Oh, shout it out brothers and sisters,

The Walking Man is coming,

Tell them that he has a bell,

Tell them he has a hammer,

Tell them he has a heart full of love,

A spirit full of hope,

Tell he can't be broken,

He can't be stopped,

He rides a just wave,

He fears no evil,

He walks inspired by that righteous shepherd who led his people from a Pharaoh’s bondage.

He rejects reducing our children, their teachers and our local schools to test scores,

He rejects a United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's policies of dog eat dog,
That our poor schools must complete against each other in his sick Race To The Top's lie,
He rejects competition without equity has any place in a nation who loves justice and fairness. 

Tell it from every mountaintop that he is not alone,

The people reject selling our local public schools to the highest bidders,

The people reject standards that hold not one politician accountable,

The people reject standards that hold not one policy maker accountable,
The people reject standards that hold not one governor accountable, 

The people reject that equity comes in spending more on your wealthy schools than your poor schools.

I am one man walking to DC in the name of love,

Source: (Education Week's 2015 Quality Counts report only Alaska spends more on it's poor schools than it's wealthy schools)

If you want to know what the Walking Man was listening to on his walk's If I had a hammer song by Trini Lopez