VP McGrath’s Comments to the Board of Trustees | April 25, 2019

Good evening. Tonight you see me and other members of the COD community wearing red. This is the traditional color of the labor movement, but it is also the color worn by educators across the country as a demonstration of hope and activism in support of public education. COD faculty are proud to work at an open access public community college, teaching students with a variety of preparation and diverse backgrounds, and we are also proud to be part of the broader effort by teachers, students, and education support professionals to fight for what is best for our schools and each other.

To quote in part from the National Education Association “Red for Ed” manifesto, “When we think about the promise of education today, we see the future leaders of our nation and the qualified educators who reach, teach and inspire them. We see classrooms with modern tools that help students prepare to make an impact on the world. We see students getting the support they need to thrive and educators having the support they need to serve.

“We see progress and hope.

“But today we also see … educators working around the clock to make a difference in the lives of their students and standing up to lawmakers to ask for better pay and school funding. We’re raising our voices together for our students, for our schools and for ourselves as educators.

“That’s why we’re wearing Red for Ed.”

This evening faculty are here to support students and community members who object to the presence of former Rep. Ives on the presidential search committee. Her record does not support public education, students, or faculty, and we question her interest in participating in the selection process. Whose interests does she represent, and are those interests consistent with COD values?

I think this board can count on seeing more Red for Ed at Board meetings in the future as we all fight for what we value here at COD.