Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Cleveland High School students write, direct, and film music video urging Portlanders to vote for schools

The creative energy and passion in this video, which was written, directed, and filmed by Cleveland High School students, brings tears to my eyes. When I was a school-age child, I don't remember worrying every year about whether my school would have enough money. My second-grader knows that he doesn't have a music teacher this year because of budget cuts. Our kids hear us lament the fact that teachers are regularly losing their jobs because of inadequate school funding. What kind of message are we sending to our children? Clearly, we are saying that education doesn't matter enough.
I love this video, in which the students sing about the problems faced by public schools and urge Portlanders to vote for the bond measures. But underneath their message, I can't help thinking: they shouldn't have to do this. But they do.


  1. It is shameful what Oregonians continue doing to the public school system. I would love to raise my son in Portland, where I grew up and my parents still live, but who would purposefuly put their child in a school system that has had cut after cut for decades now?

    My husband is a teacher, I am a school therapist, and our son has special needs. We have chosen to live in Texas, where education is still somewhat of a priority and we can actually live on our wages and not have to wonder from year to year if we will be downsized.

    From the bottom of my heart, good luck to y'all. It breaks my heart to think of generations of Portlanders growing up without adequate education.

    Alameda Elementary class of 1992
    Beaumont Middle class of 1995
    Grant High class of 1999

  2. I'm surprised to hear that education is a priority in Texas--I guess that doesn't fit my stereotype of Texas. But I'm glad to hear it!

    I must say, that even though all these rotten budget cuts truly SUCK BIG TIME, we have been pleased with the education our children have received at Portland Public Schools. It's because of the extremely high quality of staff, I believe. (Although we have had some duds at the middle school level, which makes me support a system that rewards teacher merit vs. just seniority.) Thanks so much, Emily. I hope someday things will be different in Oregon.