Solidarity Statement with the Students of Fieldston

Photo by Zoë Casdin (source)

Dear Students of Fieldston,

The members of the May Day Student Organization of New York City would like to congratulate you on your victory over the Fieldston administration. This is truly a remarkable victory not just for the students of Fieldston, but for youth of the whole people. Your experience will serve as an example to other young student militants around the city. We at the May Day Student Organization are impressed and inspired by the leadership and discipline displayed by the young activists in your ranks. We support your militant struggle against racism in education, at a time when the need for militant struggle against racism in our education system is as pressing as ever. Working class black mothers are jailed for sending their children to “the wrong school district”, in order to give their children access to resources they are deprived of by the American dictatorship of the bourgeoisie. At the same time white members of the bourgeoisie are being implicated in an elaborate and widespread Ivy League college-entrance bribery scheme. We know these white parents will not be held to the same standards as black parents who take much more modest measures to give their children a good education. To bear witness to the racial caste system, which the capitalist class employs to divide the black and white masses in struggle one has to go no further than their local public school.

We find your demands for a a curriculum that educates students on the rich history of struggles waged by oppressed peoples, and the demand for affinity groups especially important. Historically, Black Student Unions and other ethnicity based student organizations have played an important role in waging struggles which have shaped our education system in ways which are still observable today. However the victories won by these groups have been persistently rolled back and attacked since the major student struggles of the 60s and 70s. It’s time to stop ceding ground to racist bourgeois school administrators, and put power in the hands of the people!

Our organization came about from the demand for a permanent, disciplined, and organized body of students with a fighting capacity, in the wake of the 2018 May Day occupation of the New School Cafeteria. Last Spring The New School administration attempted to lay off 31 workers, all of whom were people of color. The New School administration thought they could treat these workers as if they were nothing, but with the support of the students these workers showed them that the working people are in fact everything! On May 1st 2018 over a hundred students poured into the cafeteria, and occupied it for two weeks until The New School administration met our demand to rehire the workers. After the occupation, we were faced with the question of how to continue the struggle against the capitalist class and their unrelenting assault on oppressed and exploited people, in the sphere of education. Our answer was to write a program around which we would construct a student mass organization capable of struggling for its realization. The attached program is the distillation of years of experience in student organizing, and the product of extensive investigation and reflection on the state of the US education system. We hope you will find it useful in your future struggles. We would love to meet sometime in the future to further discuss how our organizations can build a genuine City-Wide student movement in NYC!

In Struggle,
The May Day Student Organization


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