By Mark R. Warren

The chronic failure of public education in low-income groups constitutes one in all our nation's such a lot urgent civil rights and social justice matters. Many institution reformers realize that poverty, racism, and a scarcity of energy held by way of those groups undermine kid's schooling and improvement, yet few comprehend what to do approximately it.

A fit on Dry Grass argues that group organizing represents a clean and promising method of college reform as a part of a broader time table to construct energy for low-income groups and deal with the profound social inequalities that impact the schooling of kids. in response to a accomplished nationwide examine, the ebook offers wealthy and compelling case reviews of sought after organizing efforts in Chicago, manhattan urban, la, Denver, San Jose, and the Mississippi Delta. The authors convey how organizing teams construct the participation and management of folks and scholars to allow them to develop into strong actors at school development efforts. in addition they establish promising how you can triumph over divisions and create the collaborations among educators and neighborhood citizens required for deep and sustainable institution reform.

Identifying the major methods that create robust connections among colleges and groups, Warren, Mapp, and their collaborators exhibit how neighborhood organizing builds strong relationships that bring about the transformational switch essential to strengthen academic fairness and a powerful democracy.

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Extra info for A Match on Dry Grass: Community Organizing as a Catalyst for School Reform

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If unilateral power involves power “over,” relational power emphasizes power “with” others, or building the power to accomplish common aims. Unilateral power is zero-sum, but relational power represents a win-win situation. In other words, organizing groups build power to influence education reform, but they are also looking to build power with educational institutions to cultivate and achieve shared objectives whenever possible. Relational power requires mutuality, a degree of reciprocal influence, and an exchange of views and interests.

Organizing groups leverage social capital to change the power dynamic in conventional relationships between public institutions and lowincome communities. Building social capital among parents is particularly important to education organizing because studies have shown that working-class parents, unlike their H ow Com m u n it y Org an iz in g Works 25 middle-class counterparts, are not typically connected to each other around schools. Some organizing networks have formalized strategies for building relationships, centered on one-to-one meetings between participants.

These questions sparked the beginning of a long journey in which PACT organized to empower people of faith to act collectively around their common concerns. The journey started when community leaders and clergy from a group of Catholic churches in East San Jose asked Jose Carrasco if he would help them get organized. Jose, a second-generation Mexican American with a direct style of communicating and a compact, commanding presence, had organized with the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) in Texas and Los Angeles and had also been deeply involved with the farm workers and Chicano movements.

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A Match on Dry Grass: Community Organizing as a Catalyst for by Mark R. Warren
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