School Colors Ep. 5: The Disappearing District

Since 2002, the number of students in Bed-Stuy’s District 16 has dropped by more than half. There’s no single reason why this is happening, but the year 2002 is a clue: that’s when Michael Bloomberg became the Mayor, abolished local school boards, and took over the New York City school system. In this episode, we’ll […]

School Colors Ep. 4: “Agitate! Educate! Organize!”

In the wake of the 1968 teachers’ strikes, Black people in Central Brooklyn continued to fight for self-determination in education — both inside and outside of the public school system. Some veterans of the community control movement started an independent school called Uhuru Sasa Shule, or “Freedom Now School,” part of a pan-African cultural center […]

School Colors Ep. 3: Third Strike

In the fall of 1968, New York City teachers went on strike three times, in reaction to an experiment in community control of schools in Ocean Hill-Brownsville, Brooklyn. The third strike was the longest, and the ugliest. The movement for community control tapped into a powerful desire among Black and brown people across New York […]