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Southwest Detroit Freedom School

Detroit – TODAY and for the next five days: Please support and spread the word! This deserves national coverage. These students need to be lifted up as the leaders they are. In our current political/economic climate, I believe we all have an opportunity to learn from and be inspired by the way they are rolling with this. In Solidarity! ~G

Soundtrack: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1trVIrl9Xg

Southwest Detroit Freedom School
School Starts: Friday April 25, 2012 @ 10:55 a.m.

On Friday, April 27, 2012 at 10:55 a.m., we students of Western International High School will be starting our first day of class at Southwest Detroit Freedom School at Clark Park, across from our beloved school which we were suspended from. After over 300 of us staged a student walkout on Wednesday April 25, 2012, over 150 of us were given 5-day suspensions. One of our fellow students, targeted as the “ring-leader” is being threatened with formal charges for helping organize the walkout. We were walking out in solidarity with our fellow students at Southwestern High School to save their school from closing. More importantly, we were also fighting for quality education for us at Western, and at ALL DPS schools. We do not understand why we are being punished with a loss of educational opportunity when that is exactly what we were fighting for. To further demonstrate our commitment to education, we will be attending our own school taught by ourselves and community educators for the duration of our suspension. We are still looking for more teachers and students.

Contact us if you want to help and/or attend.
E-mail: ourvoicesouthwestdetroit@gmail.com,
Twitter: @_OurVoice, #LetOurVoicesBeHeard
Tumblr: ourvoicesouthwestdetroit.tumblr.com
Facebook Group: Southwest Detroit Freedom School


Classes will be about:
the history of Southwest Detroit
the Civil Rights Movement
Bboy/BGirl classes (Breakdancing)
the specifics of the Detroit Public School system
the Student Code of Conduct
your civil rights
Lino-cut prints
social justice
poetry workshops
You will also have a space to do make up work for the days you are suspended.
and much more!

Our Demands to the Detroit Public School System are the following:
1. Don’t close Southwestern High School.
2. Don’t close Maybury Elementary.
3. Remove suspensions for students involved in the walkout.
4. Don’t keep students away from school for walking out to stand up for what they believe.
5. Don’t want suspensions to go on our student records.
6. Don’t press criminal charges against students’ involved in the walkout.
7. Don’t violate students’ rights.
8. Don’t take students’ phones and search through & delete their content.
9. Don’t lay hands on students. No more physical attacks on students by security guards.
10. No more favoritism in who is & is not being targeted for suspension.
11. No more favoritism to certain students, student groups, or sports teams.
12. Honor the DPS Code of Conduct.
13. School Supplies: toilet paper, hand soap, etc.
14. Clean bathrooms, facilities.
15. Stop making students feel like we’re in prison.
16. Higher expectations for students.
17. Better college prep.
18. Stability– teachers who will actually be there for us, who are qualified.
19. Protection of teachers & their union.
20. We want equal opportunity to education.
21. Stop selling away community assets.
22. We’re students, not money signs or criminals. Stop running school like a business or a prison.
23. Give students an equal say in what goes on in all DPS schools. Give students a place in decision-making process. We want a Voice.
24. We need to invest more into our education than what our test scores are gonna be.
25. We need a better education– not students’ fault that money isn’t being used correctly.
26. We need teachers that teach, adequate books and supplies.
27. Remove the Emergency Financial Manager. Give control of schools back to community by reinstating the School Board.
28. Stop closing DPS schools. Go with what we have, stop closing everything down. Fix what we have. Stop closing DPS schools and allowing the chartering of so many schools. Stop turning schools into for profit businesses.

More: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20120426/METRO01/204260493/1026/schools/180-Detroit-high-school-students-suspended-after-protesting-closures

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1 Southwest Detroit Freedom School { 04.30.12 at 2:57 pm }
2 Detroit Public Schools – Kicked Out Of School For Learning? — The Good Men Project { 04.30.12 at 8:01 pm }

[...] Administrators at Southwestern High School suspended roughly 150 students last week for caring enough about their education to take action. In response to the suspension, the students have done precisely what students who care about their education would do. They’ve started their own school. The Southwest Detroit Freedom School at Clark Park will meet during the during the 5-day suspension period. A list of what topics will be covered there as well as the students’ overall list of demands from of the district can be found here. [...]

3 Restructuring Detroit » Counterpunch: Tells the Facts, Names the Names { 05.16.12 at 12:39 pm }

[...] [viii] The 29th Demand of Southwest Detroit Freedom School: http://detroitevolution.com/2012/04/southwest-detroit-freedom-school/ [...]

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