Wednesday, March 2, 2011


"Students rally against fee hikes and budget cuts" by Nanette Asimov, John King and Jessica Kwong from "San Francisco Chronicle" newspaper
(03-02) 16:03 PST SAN FRANCISCO -- Small but spirited bands of college students gathered onBay Area campuses today, using marches and rallies to show their frustration with the financial pressures that face higher education.
The region's largest rally appeared to be at San Francisco State University, where upwards of 300 students staged an informational picket line along19th Avenue before moving inside the student union to listen to speeches and music.
Afterward, many of the protesters shrugged off the afternoon's gray drizzle and marched along Ocean Avenue to the City College of San Francisco's main campus, where a spaghetti lunch was waiting at Ram Plaza.
"The energy was definitely here," said Akasha Perez, 21, at 4th-year student at San Francisco State and one of the event organizers. "Students were stepping up even though it was raining."
At UC-Berkeley, perhaps 100 students and their supporters gathered on the steps ofSproul Plaza to assail this year's round of proposed budget cuts and fee hikes.
"We must fight - like the Egyptians," proclaimed Marco Amaral, a second-year student in political science, referring to the need to oppose reductions in state funding to higher education. "We must not give up - like the Libyans. We must resist - like the Wisconsins."
The events were part of what student and union organizers declared to be a "National Day of Action in Defense of Higher Education."
The rallies came as grants to help low-income students pay for college are threatened at the state and local level. In Congress, House Republicans proposed Friday to reduce the maximum Pell Grant by $845, to $4,705. President Obama is eyeing an end to Pell Grants for summer school.
In California, state lawmakers are considering reducing Cal Grants for students in private colleges and universities, while tightening qualifications for students in public and private schools alike. Public higher education is expecting cuts of at least $1.4 billion next year.
If the pressure of fee hikes and budget cuts has become an annual saga, so has the high-visibility response from students who march, wave posters and shout loudly into microphones about education's public good.
Additional events are planned for this evening, including a "town hall forum on the funding crisis" at City College of San Francisco's Mission campus, 1125 Valencia St.

2011-03-01 "Organizers Across State Prepare for Wednesday Protests; Students From College Campuses Throughout California Plan Rallies To Protest Budget Cuts" By Jordan Bach-Lombardo from "Daily Californian" newspaper at UC Berkeley
Almost one year after over 10,000 protesters gathered on March 4, 2010 in San Francisco and thousands more across the state marched to protest state funding cuts to education, rallies are again being planned for March 2 across California - but much more locally this time around.
Pockets of protests from the Bay Area to Southern California to Riverside County will occur as schools gather to combine their voices in support of public higher education, which faces $1.4 billion in funding reductions in Gov. Jerry Brown's 2011-12 budget proposal. The UC and California State University systems are each expected to absorb $500 million and the California Community Colleges system faces over $400 million in funding reductions.
While many East Bay colleges are gathering in Berkeley, schools from the peninsula are organizing marches and public forums.
Students from San Francisco City College's Ocean campus will picket at San Francisco State University along with students there, according to Alisa Messer, president of American Federation of Teachers Local 2121 - a union that represents faculty members of San Francisco City College. Then, the community college and San Francisco State students will march together to the Ocean campus.
Later in the evening, K-12, community college and San Francisco State educators will hold a public forum at the community college's Mission campus to discuss the proposed funding reductions to public education, Messer said.
In Riverside County, UC Riverside protesters are beginning their rally with faculty holding lectures in the middle of the campus and are then marching into downtown Riverside to meet up with other local colleges, according to Alfonso Ruiz, a member of the student group Social Justice Alliance, which is organizing the events.
Farther west in Los Angeles County, rallies are being held at four campuses - UCLA, CSU Los Angeles, Pasadena City College and CSU Northridge - but collaboration between the campuses has not occurred at the same level as in other regions.
"One of the goals of this (protest) is to establish better communication between CSUs and UCs," said Dustin Marks, a senior at CSU Northridge and member of the Activist Student Coalition, which is organizing protests at the campus. "Other schools are doing things on the same day, but it has been very hard to find out what they are doing."
With the lack of inter-campus collaboration, Marks said the focus for March 2 is to build a stronger campus community out of a student body that currently has a "level of dissonance" about how to approach the issue of funding reductions.
"There will be different rally points set up around campus to engage with the different parts of campus to understand how the different parts of campus are being affected, to show how (the cuts) are affecting what these different departments are able to deliver," he said.
Almost exactly on the anniversary of last year's March 4 protests, organizers across the state are trying to raise the same level of energy for this protest.
"(People) have been a little slower in getting going this year - energy hasn't been quite as high," said Allan Fisher, an executive board member of AFT Local 2121 and an English as a Second Language teacher at San Francisco City College's Mission campus. "But I think that because the situation is so dire, people are responding."

Napa Valley College
2011-03-01 "Napa Valley College students to protest 'austerity measures'" from "Vallejo Times-Herald"
NAPA -- In an era of continuing state budget cuts and fewer classes, Napa Valley College students will hold a rally in support of education, starting at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday at McCarthy Library Plaza.
The afternoon rally is meant to call attention to the "austerity measures for education proposed by Gov. Jerry Brown and other politicians, that will only serve to undercut the foundation for California's future," according to a press release about the event.
Organizers could not be reached for comment.
Students will be protesting fee increases and cuts to education which bar some students from pursuing higher education, organizers wrote in the release.
The rally will include speeches, music from local bands and other events, and will be held in conjunction with similar activities at community colleges statewide.
The event has been endorsed by the following organizations -- Associated Students of Napa Valley College (ASNVC), Students for a Democratic Society, Club Hispano Americano, Community Garden Club, All Arts Club, Napa Valley Dream Act Coalition, Sembrando Semillas en la Educación, MESA, SACNAS, Society for Hispanic Physics and Engineers, Students Rompiendo Barreras, Ballet Folklorico, Anime Club, Black Student Union and La Comunidad Unida.

Alex Shantz, president of the Associated Students of Napa Valley College, also known as the Student Senate, speaks to a crowd of about 50 people at the NVC Campus on Wednesday afternoon. The rally was against funding cuts to higher education, part of the National Day of Action to Defend Education. College
and kindergarten through 12th-grade students across the state also protested the cuts. J.L. Sousa/Register
2011-03-03 "Students Protest Cuts at Napa Valley College; Afternoon rally draws a small but enthusiastic crowd as part of a statewide protest against education cuts" by Louisa Hufstader
Despite threatening skies, about 50 people turned out for a protest rally at Napa Valley College Wednesday afternoon.
"Why are we still blaming dire times on a recession that is over? The recession has been over since June, 2009," said student James Holiday, during his speech to the small but enthusiastic crowd.
"We just don't seem to care that much about education," continued Holiday, who is the student trustee on the Napa Valley College board and president of the college's Black Students Union.
The demonstration on the plaza outside the college's McCarthy Library was part of a statewide day of action against proposed budget cuts to public education in California.
Alex Shantz, president of the student senate, invoked the shade of Free Speech Movement orator Mario Savio with a fiery address.
"We have the power to refuse unjust decisions," Shantz told the assembled students and staff.
"Community college is not a corporation, and we as students are not raw materials and do not need to be made into a product," Shantz continued.
"We are human beings, we are lovers of learning and we seek to reate a bettre society not to conform to the systems that have ruined our society on the first place," he said, to cheers and applause.
Along with several student speakers, members of the college's staff and faculty also took the stage.
"In order to save a democracy, you have to have an educated populace. If you choke out public education, you won't have a democracy," said instructor Eileen Tejada, who told the students that they needed to get more of their classmates involved.
"If you all united and got together said there will be no cuts, there would be no cuts," she said. "But look around you? Where is everybody? Where are they?
"That’s a question you have to ask yourselves," Tejada continued. "How willing are you to stand up and push back?"
The Napa rally was nowhere near as large and vociferous as the one at the University of California, Berkeley on the same day, which drew hundreds of people and resulted in 17 arrests after protesters occupied a building.
But even a crowd of 50 is significant at a community college like Napa's, where many students are also working part-time or even full-time jobs while pursuing an education.

James Holiday, student trustee to the college board and president of the Black Students Union, prepares to speak. Credit Louisa Hufstader

Sonoma State Univerisity
"Sonoma State Rallies for Education in Statewide Day of Action; Students on campus were rallying from daybreak till midnight" by Angela Hart
Students and teachers across California today are participating in a statewide day of action, aimed at raising awareness about the possible impact of Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposal to slash $1.4 billion from higher education statewide.
The protests and pickets are being held at public school systems across the board, from the elementary level, to college.
At Sonoma State University, students this morning pitched tents outside Stevenson Hall, in what they’re calling a “campout for quality education.” Some came as early as 7 a.m. to protest, and they said they’re not leaving until as late as midnight.
“I’m out here because three programs are not on the budget for next fall — theSonoma State Star newspaper, the campus radio station [KUSN] and public relations,” said Kendall Fedor, a news editor for the newspaper. “We need to protest budget cuts and put pressure on President [Ruben] Arminana, who makes over $300,000 a year.”
Arminana’s salary is $291,179, according to the 2009-2010 Sonoma State University Expenditure Plan.
“As a student, it’s so hard to get classes already,” said Kelley Michelucci, a recent graduate who was camped out Wednesday. “The only way I graduated on time was by taking winter and summer classes. It’s very stressful.”
Susan Kashack, associate vice president for marketing and communications, said the university supports the day of action.
“The students here today are camped out to show how important higher education is,” Kashack said. “There are 8,000 students here and we want to make sure every student gets the education they deserve.”
“It’s important to the students, but also to the future of the state itself,” Kashack added.
Brown’s proposed budget, which projected a $25.4 billion state budget gap over the next 18 months, aims to cut state spending by $12.5 billion and temporarily extend several current taxes. Sonoma State’s budget would be cut by $8 million, according to Kashack.

From left: Andreas Knuttel, Kelley Michelucci and Kendall Fedor camp out as part of the statewide day of action, protesting Gov. Jerry Brown's cuts to higher education. Credit Angela Hart

Sacramento State University

2011-03-02 "Unions, students rally against state budget cuts to higher education" by Laurel Rosenhall from "Sacramento Bee" newspaper
Public employee unions and student activists around California are organizing protests today at college campuses statewide. They say they're rallying to "defend public education" and protest Gov. Jerry Brown's proposal to cut $1.4 billion from public colleges and universities next year. Demonstrators will gather at 11 a.m. at Sacramento State to illustrate how budget cuts are affecting students in the California State University system, which Brown has proposed cutting by $500 million. Other protests are planned at Cal State campuses in Fresno, Fullerton, San Francisco, Sonoma, Northridge and Los Angeles.
The University of California would also face a $500 million cut under Brown's budget proposal. Protests are planned today at UC Berkeley, UC Santa Cruz, UCLA and UC Riverside.
Brown has proposed cutting $400 million from the state's community colleges, and raising tuition by 38 percent -- to $36 per unit.
Protests are planned today at many community colleges including Napa Valley College, City College San Francisco, Berkeley City College, Laney College, Diablo Valley College and Skyline College.

UC students held a march Monday in Sacramento to protest university fee hikes. More protests are planned today at UC and CSU campuses throughout California. Hector Amezcua/
2011-03-02 "Sac State Students Rally Against Budget Cuts; Defend Education Movement Rallies At Sac State"
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- On Wednesday about 45 Students and faculty members rallied on Sacramento State University campus against budget cuts.
The budget cuts have forced public universities across the state to slash courses and triple student fees. Tens of the thousands of eligible students have not been accepted to state universities in the last two years because of rising costs and a lack of available courses.
The students held signs while gathered at University Union in the middle of campus. The student also
"It's hard to be a student these days," said Amanda Mooers. "I personally had to push my graduation date back because I can not get into classes."
Sacramento State has not been given its budget for this year but expects few state dollars.
"We are now being asked to deliver 21st century education with 20th century dollars," said Kim Nava from Sacramento State. "Our state funding is at 1999 levels while the state system has 70,000 more students in it."
The demonstration at Sacramento State was part of a statewide effort on all campuses called Defend Education.

UC Berkeley

"March 2nd: Fight for Public Education and Free Speech
Time Wednesday, March 2 at 12:00pm - March 3 at 12:00pm
Location Memorial Glade, UC Berkeley, Ca, Berkeley, CA
Tired of budget cuts and student fees? Pissed about the fact that you’ll have to stay 13 years just to get into all of your required courses? Sick of the UC executive pay increases and staff layoffs? Are you angry about the past political repression of students and workers in the UC system? Recent events in Puerto Rico, Wisconsin, Egypt, Tunisia, etc. show us that students and workers are fighting against Austerity and Political Repression. Join us in the following March 2 activities for UCB and the Bay Area!
Schedule of Events:
-12 pm – Resistance Picnic: Free Food & Workshops/Discussions on Fighting the Cuts!
-5pm – Bay Area Mass Rally: Student, Worker, and Teacher Bay Area Convergence
-Night – Tent City: We’re Staying Until Our Demands Are Met!
*All Activities @ Memorial Glade
-End “Operational Excellence”
-Drop the Charges against Student Protesters! No Repression!
-Democratize the UC!
-Stop the 1.4 Billion in Budget Cuts!
March 2nd is a National Day of Action and is endorsed at Berkeley by: Student Worker Action Team, CUE-Teamsters Statewide , UPTE Statewide, United Auto Workers (GSI’s), ASUC, Solidarity Alliance, Berkeley Federation of Teachers, Oakland Education Association, Laney College SUP, Diablo Valley City College SDS, EDU (SF k-12 Teachers) & more. If you want to endorse please email: . See list at
More info:

Roughly 700 UC Berkeley students, faculty, staff, and community members gathered on Upper Sproul last October for a national day of action. The protesters united to support public education, holding teach-outs, sit-ins, marches and a noon rally. Anna Vignet/Staff at "Daily Californian" newspaper at UC Berkeley
Link2011-03-03 "Protesters come down from fourth-floor ledge at UC Berkeley building" by Matt Krupnick and Doug Oakley from "Contra Costa Times" newspaper
A daylong drama that unfolded when eight protesters chained themselves together on a fourth-floor ledge of Wheeler Hall at UC Berkeley ended peacefully when they came down late Thursday.
The protesters emerged from the building about 9:25 p.m. and were not arrested. Originally, a group of nine climbed onto the ledge about 2 p.m., campus spokeswoman Janet Gilmore said, and crowds of approximately 200 to 300 onlookers gathered outside Wheeler Hall to watch, many chanting slogans.
The protests were over budget cuts to education, and several onlookers who documented the event through postings on Twitter indicated the students were going to meet with university Chancellor Robert Birgeneau to discuss their demands.
About 100 people who were still outside the hall when the eight remaining protesters agreed to leave the ledge offered loud cheers of approval. Some of the protesters then addressed the crowd and thanked their supporters.
All eight were cited for trespassing, police said.
The protests occurred a day after university police arrested 17 people who refused to leave the same building.
UC Berkeley police spokesman Lt. Alex Yao confirmed to media members that nine students originally took to the ledge but that one of them, identified by the Daily Californian website as junior Alex Poska, was arrested after he tried to come off the ledge and return to the building through a window, Yao said.
"Our concern throughout the day, as it always is in these situations, was the safety not only of the protesters but the people who are watching them," Yao said. "The communication between both sides is what we attribute to being able to end this in a peaceful way."
The protesters began to leave the ledge about 8:45 p.m., Yao said, and then emerged from Wheeler Hall at 9:25 p.m.
Early during the drama, police in riot gear cleared a crowd that had gathered near the front door of the building, and some protesters and police shoved each other as the line of officers moved in. Crowds outside the building sat and chanted, "Shame on you."
While on the 5-foot-wide ledge, protesters unfurled a large banner reading: "Our university. Stop the cuts. Fight back."
They also released a list of demands, which included cutting university fees, ending cost-cutting efforts at the university, "democratizing" UC's governing Board of Regents and stopping police oppression.
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Harry Le Grande and other administrators had been inside Wheeler Hall trying to negotiate with the protesters, but Le Grande emerged later and read a statement from Birgeneau urging the group to come down peacefully.
Wheeler Hall was evacuated, and Birgeneau closed the classroom building and canceled all classes there. The incident interrupted midterms on the campus.
On Wednesday night, UC Berkeley police arrested 17 people who refused to leave Wheeler Hall after a day of protests against education budget cuts.
All 17 were taken to the Berkeley city jail and cited for misdemeanor trespassing, Yao said. Fourteen were released after being cited, but three, who had extra charges of obstructing police officers, were held overnight to appear in court Thursday, Yao said.
Protesters at UC Berkeley are commonly issued citations and released on site and not taken to jail Yao said, but in this case "we were trying to make sure the operation was conducted safely, efficiently and timely, and we believed taking them to jail was the safest way to do so." Yao said no injuries were reported during the arrests.
He said the protests began around noon with about 200 protesters at Sproul Plaza on campus. The protesters then left Sproul and were joined by about 75 high school students from Oakland and marched through Doe Library and Wheeler Hall, Yao said.
About 55 demonstrators stayed in the lobby of Wheeler Hall throughout the day. At the 10 p.m. closing time for the building, 17 of the protesters refused to leave, Yao said, and were arrested.

2011-03-03 "Police facing growing protest at UC Berkeley" from "Associated Press" newswire:
BERKELEY, Calif. — Baton-wielding riot police at the University of California, Berkeley faced off Thursday evening with a growing number of demonstrators angry over state education cuts.
Eight protesters occupied the fourth-floor outside ledge of the university's Wheeler Hall, with six of them chained together, a university statement said. Police said officers were able to reach one protester through the window and arrested him.
As dusk fell, television live shots showed hundreds of protesters on the ground yelling and chanting, while a line of police in riot gear surrounded the building.
UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau ordered the building closed at 4 p.m., and police began moving students, faculty and staff from the area, according to the university.
University officials said 26 classes were canceled, impacting more than 1,000 students.
Thursday's protest began at around 2 p.m. It followed demonstrations against state education cuts on Wednesday that led to the arrests of 17 people who university police said refused to leave a campus building.
All 17, including seven students, were cited for trespassing. Police Lt. Alex Yao said three people in the group also were booked at the Berkeley jail on suspicion of obstructing police.
The protest Wednesday was part of a day of action by students around the country opposed to education cuts.
A similar protest was held in Berkeley last year, also in early March. Those demonstrations turned rowdy, and included the rush-hour shutdown of a major freeway in neighboring Oakland.

2011-03-03 "Student, Police Standoff Ends At UC Berkeley"
BERKELEY, Calif. -- A group of student protesters retreated from the ledge of the University of California at Berkeley building Thursday evening where they were perched for several hours, according to students outside the building.
The protesters were chained to an antenna on the fourth floor of Wheeler Hall to protest budget cuts to public education in front of a crowd of about 300 people, second-year UC Berkeley doctoral student Callie Maidhof said.
Thursday afternoon, protesters hung four large paper banners in front of Wheeler Hall listing their demands, including an end to the budget cuts and an end to police brutality.
Shortly before 9 p.m., the students freed themselves and came down from the ledge after reaching an agreement with campus officials, Maidhof said.
"It's been declared a victory," Maidhof said.
The students have been calling for a response to the cuts by UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau. Maidhof said it appears that they have succeeded on that front, although the time of the meeting with the chancellor had not been announced.
A campus representative was not readily reachable for comment on this evening's developments.
As part of the agreement, Maidhof said, the students who had been on the ledge since about 2 p.m. today will not be handcuffed by police. Those students had yet to exit of Wheeler Hall.
The university has also apparently agreed not to impose punitive measures, Maidhof said. Instead participating student protestors will receive letters of notification in lieu of student misconduct charges.
It is unclear if more arrests have been made since this afternoon, when UC Berkeley spokeswoman Janet Gilmore said police arrested one protester who was not chained to the others on the ledge at about 2:15 p.m.
As dusk fell, hundreds of protesters on the ground yelled and chanted, while a line of police in riot gear surrounded the building.
UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau ordered the building closed at 4 p.m., and police began moving students, faculty and staff from the area, according to the university.
University officials said 26 classes were canceled, impacting more than 1,000 students.
Thursday's protest began at around 2 p.m. It followed demonstrations against state education cuts on Wednesday that led to the arrests of 17 people who university police said refused to leave a campus building.
Police arrested one protester who was not chained to the others on the ledge at about 2:15 p.m., UC Berkeley spokeswoman Janet Gilmore said.
Two other protesters remain on the ledge moving about freely, but university police have secured the building, Gilmore said
"This is a serious safety issue," UC Berkeley spokesman Dan Mogulof said.
"We're going to make sure the health and safety of people are not compromised," Gilmore said.
Protesters hung four large paper banners in front of Wheeler Hall that listed the demands of protesters, who seek to end operational excellence, stop the budget cuts, democratize the region and stop police brutality, Maidhof said.
The students have also been using a bullhorn to criticize the arrest of 17 other protesters at UC Berkeley Wednesday night.
Fourteen of the protesters have been released and were scheduled for a court appearance at 2 p.m. Thursday, Maidhof said.
One of the students arrested, who asked not to be named, was outside Wheeler Hall protesting as of 5:30 p.m. The 20-year-old UC Berkeley ethnic studies student began protesting inside the building at about 5 p.m. Tuesday.
She said that because the protest was designed to be an open and inviting atmosphere that there was free food and live music Tuesday.
At about 10 p.m., police first ordered protesters to leave, she said.
"We linked arms until police physically separated us," the student said. At about 10:30 p.m., Berkeley police arrested her for trespassing.
She said she was released from jail at about 8 a.m. and returned at 2 p.m. for her court appearance, where she was not formally charged.
The student said she was protesting because she thought the budget cuts would limit an educational system that is already broken.
"I want people to realize we do have access to education and access to public space because we're all human beings," she said. "We'll put chains on our bodies if they put chains on our minds."
She said she hopes these protests make an impact with UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert J. Birgeneau.
According to the student, the other three students arrested remain in jail, and are scheduled for court Friday morning.

LinkSan Francisco State University
2011-03-02 "Students and faculty picket on 19th and Holloway avenues" from "Golden Gate Express" newspaper
Students and faculty members demonstrated on 19th and Holloway avenues today in demonstration against pending budget cuts. The protest was in collaboration with a statewide day of action.
“Hey hey, ho ho, budget cuts have to go” activists shouted as they picketed the major intersection.
Neither the scattered rain showers nor winds stopped SF State and City College of San Francisco students and faculty members from speaking against Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed 2011-2012 budget, which would cut $500 million each from the CSU and UC systems, $400 million from California community colleges and would leave SF State with a $32 million deficit.
“Classes are getting bigger and students can’t get the attention they deserve,” said Sheila Tully, a lecturer in the anthropology department at SF State. “The quality of education is deteriorating when [schools] don’t have enough money to provide students with resources.”
Tully, who teaches three classes this semester and has a total of 220 students, is approached each semester by students who say they can’t afford to continue a path toward higher education.
“The mission of the campus is to teach students not to impoverish them,” she said, while she took a break from the picket line.
The protest began at 11a.m. with approximately 20 students and faculty members. By the afternoon, approximately 100 protesters marched from the streetlight on 19th and Holloway avenues to the University’s shuttle stop.
Protestors held picket signs reading ‘Give a shit,’ among others, and made their way to the Cesar Chavez Center, where speakers, an African protest dance, spoken word poetry, a rap song about the cuts and an a capella group rallied the participants.
“Graduate on time, join us in the picket line,” shouted Barbara Marquez, 22, a senior at SF State. Marquez, a political science major, said she went from a 4-year graduation plan to a 5-year plan as a result of budget cuts.
According to Marquez, the political science department only accepts 10 percent of its students to its core requirement classes.
“I don’t receive financial aid and I’m already at $20,000 in debt,” she said. “Apparently I’m rich, making less than $20,000 a year.”
Not everyone on the sidewalk was as enthusiastic or passionate as his or her fellow colleagues and professors.
Juan Samarripa, a 23-year-old kinesiology major at SF State stood and observed the picket line while he waited for his bus.
“I participated last year but not this time because I have to work,” he said.
Samarripa believes students bring awareness to the campus community by protesting but would be more successful if they talked to their local politicians.
At the conclusion of the performances in the student center, the protestors left the building to march their way to CCSF where a rally will take place.

SF State students protest against the college budget cuts on Mar. 2. John H. Bird / staff photographer

San Jose State University
Speak Out! Act Now! Against Cuts to Schools & Services
Time: Wednesday, March 2 · 12:00pm - 3:00pm
Location: St. James Park, San Jose CA
We, an alliance of youth, students of color, migrants, workers and community members in San Jose, call for mass demonstrations on March 2nd against the on-going budget cuts to education and social services.
The uprisings in North Africa have shown us that we, youth of color, must act out our responsibility to our community and take our struggles to the streets. We must come together and demand Liberation through voice and action. We understand that liberal acts and liberal policies are oppressive tactics that are used to divide us. Thus, we believe that the welfare of youth, migrants, workers, and people of color are tied together. At this moment, we must join struggles and organize against the state forces that have denied us and our families’ freedom of expression and human dignity.
We demand:
• Full Legalization for All; Stop Separating Families
• Stop the Criminalization of Youth/People of color
• Stop the Cuts to Community Centers
• Freeze the Fee Hikes; Public Education should be Free
• Justice to Families of Victims Murdered by the Police
• End U.S. imperialist Wars & Occupations
On March 2nd, we invite all to express themselves through a speak out and we will march from St. James Park to San Pedro Square to the Fallon Statue to the Federal Building to San Jose State University. On the day of, we invite everyone to wear BLACK and the calavera with us.
“We wear the calavera on our faces to symbolize that our ancestors and their struggle for land and life live within us. The skull represents our alliance with the Alta Califas youth movement, and calls attention to the death of public education due to budget cuts, in the context of the many deaths and violence inflicted on our gente and tierra in the name of privatization and neoliberal economic policy. We demand human rights for all people and an end to economic and military occupations from Aztlan to Palestine.” MEChA, Alta Califas Norte
In Struggle & Solidarity,
M.E.Ch.A de San Jose State Unviersity & March 2nd Committee

2011-02-20 "SJSU students rally against proposed CSU budget cuts" by Francisco Rendon from "Daily Spartan" newspaper at San Jose State University
In Thursday's frigid, pouring rain, the sound of banging drums and chanting students rang into classrooms around the school.
"That's the sound of budget cuts," participant Eric Acedo said. "Even with (the rain) and all the cold, people stayed out marching."
The event gave students a forum to speak out against the reduction in services that had already taken place in the CSU system and the proposed cuts from Gov. Jerry Brown in the 2011-12 budget.
Event Coordinator Herlinda Aguirre said the rally, which was organized through the Students for Quality Education, was the first in a series of events on campus designed to engage students in political reductions of offered class sections and increased student fees.
"Education should be affordable, accessible and quality for all students," she said. "I think (CSU administrators) don't care because they don't take into account student opinion."
In a previous interview, Media Relations Director Pat Lopes Harris said it was unfortunate that services had to be cut and fees raised, but the CSU system has been dealing with a budget shortfall since 2008, and steps had to be taken to address this.
"(The) state budget shortfall is eroding the promise of a higher education to California," Harris said. "The original idea is that everyone should have access to a higher education and it should be free. By making education more expensive we're increasing the cost and decreasing accessibility."
Students began gathering around Clark Hall at 10 a.m. and started assembling protest signs.
As the rain began to fall, participants stood in a circle with bucket drums and sticks.
From there, the group — which Acedo and Aguirre said at one point numbered above 200 — proceeded from Clark Hall to the Student Union, the Aquatics Center and eventually outside Tower Hall.
While faculty supported the effort by providing classrooms and encouraging students to attend, she said the event itself was primarily student driven.
"The whole reason we march is to get campuswide recognition," she said. "It's showing we have that voice."
During pauses in marching, speakers railed against a 200 percent increase in tuition for CSU students since 2002, saying their education was under attack.
According to the CSU, tuition for undergraduate students has increased by 196 percent since 2002.
Joseph Tran, lead organizer for Students for Quality Education, said the goal of such an event this early in the semester was to make students aware of student activism on campus.
"I just want to bring to light that there is an organization such as ours that is fighting against budget cuts, teacher layoffs, for students, that's working with the faculty," he said. "If they want to do something, the option is on the table."
While attendance fluctuated at times because of the weather, Tran said there were many participants who did show up, including a number of people from the Shrunken Head Man art club.
The event was successful in its goal of engaging students and letting them know such an organization exists, Acedo said.
"Our main goal was to bring awareness to other students that there is a movement against the cuts to education," he said. "I definitely think we accomplished that."
Acedo said such rallies were important because they provide a medium in which students can stand up for themselves as their situations become increasingly difficult.
"Each semester it seems like my tuition keeps going up," he said. "I am not eligible for financial aid, but I am not wealthy enough so that the budget cuts won't affect me or my family financially. It's making it harder for me to stay in school.
"I just see that education is becoming more of a privilege than a right. Everybody deserves to have that right to education."Bottom of Form
Breakdown: By the numbers
$500 million: Funding reduction that the CSU faces under Gov. Brown's proposed budget.
192 percent: The amount that CSU tuition has increased since 2002.

Senior, Joe Tran leads protesters across campus opposing proposed CSU budget cuts Thursday. Photo by Jesse Jones

March 2nd Actions list as of 2/28/11
Southern California -

Save the UC! Chop From the Top!
12 Noon. Bruin Plaza
Web info: UCLA Fights Back
Facebook1: CHOP FROM THE TOP – Nationwide Day of Action – UCLA
Facebook2: UCLA Fights Back!

CSU Northridge
Day of Action for Education
10am Oviatt Library lawn
18111 Nordhoff St.
Northridge, CA
Facebook: Activist Student Coalition

CSU Los Angeles
11:00 am. Rally by Student Union Bldg
No Cuts Coalition
Contact: Josh (323) 348-8254
Web info: [TBA]

San Diego City College
4:30pm: STOP the budget cuts PROTEST!
1313 Park Blvd (Corner of Park and ‘A’ St.)
Contact: 619-438-1571
Web info: [TBA]

Inland Empire -

UC Riverside
9am: Meeting and Picketing at 4 corners of Campus
Aberdeen and North Campus/ Canyon Crest and University/ West
Campus and Canyon Crest (lot 30)/ Linden and Canyon Crest…
11am: Gather at the Bell Tower and Rally Chanting starts at 11am.
12 Noon: Speakers
1pm Marching around Campus.
Web info: Free UCR Alliance
Facebook: Inland Empire Actions

Riverside Community College
12:30pm: Riverside Campus – MLK Building

San Bernadino Valley College
12:00pm: SB Valley Free Speech Area

City of Riverside
3pm: Convene downtown with students from CSUSB, RCC, Cal Poly
Pomona, Mt. Sac., College of the Desert, and San Bernardino
Valley College, with speakers from the student body, faculty,
community leaders and public officials on the side of education!
Northern California

UC Santa Cruz
Rally for Public Education
12:00pm: Quarry Plaza
Facebook: Rally for Public Education
Contact: [TBA]

South Bay -
Speak Out! Act Out!
12pm @ St. James Park
M.E.Ch.A de San Jose State Unviersity & March 2nd Committee

UC Berkeley/East Bay -
All Activities @ Memorial Glade in front of Doe Library, UC Berkeley
[In event of rain, events move to Multicultural Center (MLK building)]
8am-5pm GSI teach-out by UAW graduate students
12-2pm- UC staff represented by the CUE-Teamsters will be doing a potluck with food
1 pm – Resistance Picnic: Free Food & Workshops/Discussions on Fighting the Cuts!
5pm – Bay Area Mass Rally: Student, Worker, and Teacher Bay Area Convergence
Night – Tent City: We’re Staying Until Our Demands Are Met!
Web info:
Facebook: March 2nd for Public Educaton: From Egypt to Wisconsin to California!

UC Berkeley
12 noon rally Sproul Plaza
Facebook: Defend the Right to Public Education

Berkeley Public Schools
4:30 pm. Joint Rally Berkeley Federation of Teachers and Berkeley Unified School District
2134 Martin Luther King, Jr. Way (Old City Hall)
Web info: Day of Action to Defend Public Education

Berkeley City College
12:15. Teach-in
Auditorium, 2050 center st.

Laney (& other Peralta) College
12 Noon: Quake the Quad!
Web info: [TBA]
Contact: [TBA]

Oakland Unified School Dist.
Morning pickets
11:00am Disaster drills
3:00: Rally at State Building (Oakland)

City College San Francisco (Mission Campus)
12 Noon: Rally to defend public education and social services
Corner Bartlett & 22nd St.

City College San Francisco (Ocean Campus)
March 1st 10am-2pm Teach-In to Build for March 2nd
March 2nd
Rally at 2pm?
CCSF Save Our Schools
Web info: [TBA]

San Francisco State University
11-12 Rally at Malcom X plaza
12-1 Picket at 19th street
1-2 March to CCSF
SFSU United
Web info: [TBA]
Contact: [TBA]

S.F. Community School & Youth Organizations
Rally and march [locations & times TBD]

San Francisco
Town Hall Forum
7-9pm CCSF Mission Campus
1125 Valencia St. #109

Diablo Valley College
12:30: Quad. “Walk Like an Egyptian” Rally
1:30: March
Web info: [TBA]
Contact: [925] 798-3698

Napa Valley College
12:30 PM McCarthy Library Plaza
Web info: [TBA]
Contact: [TBA]

Skyline College
12 Noon: Teach-In [location?]
Web info: [TBA]
Contact: [TBA]

Cañada College
12:30pm: Speak-Out. Quad.

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