Dear CJSF Family,

Many people think of June as a time of celebration – students graduating and the start of summer. This June, news cycles have been filled with very public discourse about the ways in which students of color, immigrant children, LGBTQ and gender nonconforming youth are fighting for their most basic human and civil rights. The same zero tolerance that invaded our schools decades ago is being implemented along our borders and in our communities in heightened and harmful ways. We are caging families coming here seeking asylum just like we cage students of color and their peers for what is so often normal childhood behavior in school. 

On this month’s SchoolHouse: Equity in Education podcast, I interviewed Ricardo Martinez of Padres y Jovenes Unidos and Erika Almiron from Vamos Juntos. We discussed the school to deportation pipeline and quickly connected the dots to the school to prison pipeline and our nation's addiction to caging people. These pipelines away from success may have distinct names, but they are so entwined - a 13-year old arrested for a minor fistfight, held by local police for days because he did not have a social security card, and then actively threatened with deportation by ICE. 
Hardened schools are also cages - and we must continue to push back forcefully against a vision of safety that would lead us further in that direction. On June 6th, the U.S. Department of Education hosted a Federal School Safety Commission Listening Session. You can read a summary below of the amazing testimonies offered by CJSF's partners from Communities United, Gwinnett SToPP, Dignity in Schools Campaign, and Racial Justice NOW! at that session.

Our partners offer hope for the world we can live in when we decide to open the cage doors and embrace their beautiful vision - CJSF is proud to support them and to learn from them. 
FEDERAL BRIEFING: On June 8, the Communities for Just Schools Fund and the Executives' Alliance for Boys and Men of Color hosted The State of School Climate: A Federal Briefing . Tune into the 90-minute discussion covering: 1) An overview of the recently released 2015-16 Civil Rights Data Collection ; 2) Takeaways from the March 2018 Government Accountability Office report, Discipline Disparities for Black Students, Boys, and Students with Disabilities ; 3) Federal Legislative updates; 4) A toolkit for parents and youth to use in advocacy and engagement related to Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) and 5) Updates on important litigation strategies from the Education Civil Rights Alliance .
FEDERAL COMMISSION ON SCHOOL SAFETY : CJSF was proud to support the participation of Gwinnett SToPP , Communities United , Dignity in Schools Campaign and Racial Justice NOW at the U.S. Department of Education's Federal Commission on School Safety 's first public listening session on June 6. Catch the broadcast and watch as CJSF and our partners speak at the commission's listening session . News coverage of the commission hearing was extensive and included a number of articles quoting CJSF partners:

Leaders Igniting Transformation , a Milwaukee-based organizing group, successfully stopped a proposal that would have mandated Milwaukee Public School administrators call the cops on students for "suspected criminal activity." Read more about their success here .
Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI) released No Decisions About Us, Without Us , a report examining the impact of parent engagement in Illinois' early learning collaborations. Read the report and how parents have helped connect early childhood collaborations more into the communities they serve.
Conference on Racial and Social Justice - Minneapolis, MN
Leaders Igniting Transformation was joined by the Lewiston Education Association and UW-Milwaukee to discuss how students and educators are using data and organizing to build a youth power agenda to end the school-to-prison pipeline and ensure that schools and communities are free from violence at the 2018 Conference on Racial and Social Justice.

The Conference on Racial and Social Justice provides space for educators, students, parents & families, organizers, community members & leaders to unite for the advancement of justice in education. More...

The Funders' Collaborative on Youth Organizing will host From Walkouts to Power: Youth of Color as a Moving Force for Change , a special funder strategy session on July 9 from 9AM - 3PM at the Ford Foundation. Learn more and register here .
The Network for Public Education and the Schott Foundation for Public Education released Grading the States: A Report Card on Our Nation's Commitment to Public Schools , which evaluates the extent to which all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia funnels public money away from community public schools and invest it in privately run schools. More..
Classroom Not Cages: Shifting Our Nation's Priorities
The School-to-Prison Pipeline and the School-to-Deportation Pipeline are part of the same tragic continuum that criminalizes Black and Brown students and threatens the safety and well-being of communities of color. What does it mean to create true sanctuary in our schools and communities in this political moment? CJSF's Jaime Koppel speaks with Ricardo Martinez from Padres y Jovenes Unidos and Erika Almiron from Vamos Juntos about these harsh realities and their work to shift our nation's priorities from cages to classrooms. More...
BOOK CORNER: CJSF Staff Summer Reading List
Inspired by Octavia Butler's explorations of our human relationship to change, Emergent Strategy is radical self-help, society-help, and planet-help designed to shape the futures we want to live. Change is constant. The world is in a continual state of flux. It is a stream of ever-utating, emergent patterns. Rather than steel ourselves against such change, this book invites... more .

Poet and co-creator of the Emmy-nominated web series "Brown Girls" captures the experience of being a Pakistani Muslim woman in contemporary America, while exploring identity, violence, and healing. In this powerful and imaginative debut poetry collection, If They Come For Us , Fatimah Asghar nakedly captures the experiences of being a young Pakistani Muslim woman in America by braiding together... more .

As people consider how to respond to a resurgence of racist, xenophobic populism, A Mouth is Always Muzzled tells an extraordinary story of the ways art brings hope in perilous times. Weaving disparate topics from sugar and British colonialism to attacks on free speech and Facebook activism and... more .

Why have people from different cultures and eras formulated myths and stories with similar structures? What does this similarity tell us about the mind, morality, and structure of the world itself? In Maps of Meaning , Jordan Peterson offers a provocative new hypothesis that explores the connection between what modern neuropsychology tells us about the brain and what rituals, myths, and religion... more .

A stirring collection of poems and spirituals, accompanied by stunning collage illustrations, recollects the life of Fannie Lou Hamer, a champion of equal voting rights. Despite fierce prejustice and abuse, even being beaten to within an inch of her life, Fannie Lou Hamer was a champion of civil rights from the 1950s until her... more .

Mo' Meta Blues is a punch-drunk memoir in which Everyone's Favorite Questlove tells his own story while tackling some of the lates, the greats, the fakes, the philosophers, the heavyweights, and the true originals of the music world. He digs deep into the album cuts of his life and unearths some pivotal moments... more .