From NetRoots Nation July 19, Rev. William Barber, the voice of human rights in education:
Then Rev. William Barber III, leader of the Forward Together movement in North Carolina, electrified the crowd with an address that included support for public education in a moral vision for America.
Six panels on education topics – ranging from curriculum standards, to student suspensions, to student loan debt, to reclaiming the promise of public schools – presented a unified front against current “reform” policies and for a vision of equity and excellence in public education.
Indeed, the dialogue at the meeting made clear the term “education reform” has become a pejorative in the progressive community.
Getting Education Policy Above The “Snake Line”
As Eskow wrote, “the emotional high point” of this year’s conference was unquestionably Barber’s speech exhorting the crowd to “get our policies above the snake line.”
The “snake line,” Barber explained, marked a line in mountainous territory above which dangerous reptiles cannot live and where the “cold-blooded” can’t survive.
Indeed, America’s cold-blooded education policies can no longer survive above the bright line of progressive values. Netroots Nation showed we’re taking education policy to higher ground. As Barber urged us to do, we’ve turned to each other and declared, “We’re on our way.”