ADVERTISEMENT

December 7, 2012

Another View: Green Party school board members accomplished much in Portland

By STEPHEN SPRING

I am writing in response to a story you published titled "Burlesque dancer wiggles into seat on Portland school board " (Nov. 10).

From 2003 to 2006, I served as a school board member representing District 2. I am a member of the Green Party. I take issue with your characterization that "... voters are willing to give Greens another chance on the school board, after a disastrous stint that largely ended in 2007."

Greens are committed to social justice. When elected to office, I made policy and resource allocation decisions based on this committment. When I joined the board in 2003, there was a culture where its elected members worked in collusion with the administration to preserve not only social hegemony but also an unchecked administration.

The board, rather than advance social policy and examine resource allocation, chose to rubber stamp the work of the administration. It was a tight club. The political body was not doing its job as defined by the state's constitution.

In order to advance social justice, it was necessary to work hard and challenge the institution. This is what leaders for social change have always done.

Greens were successful in passing policy that did the following:

1. Protected private student information from military recruiters.

2. Protected student health by banning irradiated foods from being served.

3. Secured the opening of Casco Bay High School -- a school that does not sort its students by race and class, as do Portland's two large comprehensive high schools.

4. Fought a weighted grading system that contributes to racial and class under-representation in rigorous courses.

5. Provided students with free passes to use city buses.

Stephen Spring is a doctoral student at the University of Texas and a former member of the Portland school committee.





Further Discussion

Here at PressHerald.com we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • Type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • Exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)


  • Back to Opinion

News
Sports
Politics
Business
Life & Culture
People

© 2014 The Portland Press Herald - All Rights Reserved.
MaineToday Media
One City Center, 5th floor, Portland, ME 04101-5009
(207) 791-6650
contact@pressherald.com