Category Archives: Education

Champaign-Urbana to Host International Restorative Justice Learning Event

Seventeen years ago, Dominic Barter walked into a shantytown near his home in Rio de Janeiro with a question – what happens when I walk toward conflict, rather than away from it? Could it be that conflict becomes violent when … Continue reading

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Graduate Employees Lobby Illinois Legislators to Protect Workers’ Rights

The fight for workers’ rights in the U.S. has always been political, but this spring, as state legislators and governors proposed bills to limit or eliminate collective bargaining rights and devastate public services, including schools, the battle for labor took … Continue reading

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The 1970 Student Strike in Protest of Kent State Killings

University of Illinois students and faculty went on strike 41 years ago this May in response to the killing of four students at Kent State by the Ohio National Guard. The killings at Kent State were seen by many at … Continue reading

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The School for Designing a Society is in Session!

Established in 1991 in Champaign-Urbana, the School for Designing a Society is an ongoing social experiment by teachers, performers, artists, students, activists, and others in making temporary living environments where the question “What would I consider a desirable society?” is … Continue reading

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Reflections on the GEO Strike a Year Later

Students and workers are celebrating the first anniversary of the successful strike by the Graduate Employees’ Organization (GEO) and Local 6300 (AFT/IFT/AFL-CIO), the union that represents over 2,500 graduate assistants and teaching assistants at the University of Illinois at Urbana … Continue reading

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A Great Literacy Campaign for African America in the 21st Century

SOME BACKGROUND The crisis in public education has been likened toa modern day Civil Rights crisis and a human rights tragedy. At center is the debate over educating ex-slaves. Big business insiders in seats of educational authority, like Arnie Duncan … Continue reading

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Students Disrupt Board of Trustees Meeting Over Coming Tuition Hike

ABOUT TWENTY STUDENTS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and Chicago attempted to disrupt a Board of Trustees meeting today over tuition increases and the re-segregation of higher education. A member of the Urbana-Champaign community spoke on the importance … Continue reading

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Students for a United Illinois Hold Counter- Demonstration at Assembly Hall

ABOUT 100 PEOPLE PROTESTED outside Assembly Hall on October 23, 2010 where for the third year there was a pro-Chief rally organized by those wishing to revive the University of Illinois’ racist mascot. This year, protesters were made to stand … Continue reading

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An Open Letter to University of Illinois Chief of Police, Barbara O’Connor

November 15, 2010—We write with grave concern about your recent use of the “Illini Alert” text-messaging system on Monday, November 8, 2010 to report the assault in Forbes Hall and to search for the suspect in that incident. The use … Continue reading

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A Secretive and Destructive Affair: The Academy, The Foundation, and The University

On September 5 and 11, Jim Dey devoted two very favorable News-Gazette columns to the Academy on Capitalism and Limited Government Foundation. On September 5, the News-Gazette also published an editorial contending that the Academy was a “blessing” for the … Continue reading

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UIUC Denies Tuition Waivers to Fine Arts Grad Students

Last November the Graduate Employees’ Organization (GEO) of UIUC went on strike over a single issue: tuition waivers. After two days of marching in the cold and drizzling rain, the union’s bargaining team was able to secure the coverage of … Continue reading

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Football Game Flyover on 9-11 Promotes War

A recent internet-driven furor in response to my letter protesting an outburst of militarism at a University of Illinois (Urbana-Champaign) football game on September 11th has prompted the following reflections on freedom of speech, militarism and war, and the responsibilities … Continue reading

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Student Fees Make UI Sports Profitable

HIKES IN TUITION, LARGER CLASS sizes, staff furloughs, pay freezes and acrimonious labor negotiations are common knowledge for UI students, graduate employees and staff. While many look at the exorbitant pay raise of President Hogan, the $150,000 rug and other … Continue reading

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Thoughts on the Professor Howell Controversy

The issues raised by the U of I Professor Kenneth Howell’s initial hiring at the University of Illinois, his e-mail to his students who were preparing to take a final examination in his course on Catholicism, and his subsequent termination … Continue reading

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The Three R’s Project: Reading Reduces Recidivism

THE ACT OF READING IS A UNIQUELY human skill and can be transformative as well as entertaining. With this in mind, a relatively new group is seeking to provide reading materials to Illinois prison circulation libraries. The goals are to … Continue reading

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Another School Year, Another War Year

CLASSES HAVE STARTED AGAIN and military recruiters are out in full force. Students spill onto the quad, the August sun blazes down on the sea of people rushing off to class or lounging in the grass. And there are my … Continue reading

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The Battle of Mahomet

STUDENTS AND EDUCATORS in Mahomet were back in class on Monday, Aug. 23 after the Mahomet Seymour Education Association (MSEA) and the school board were able to settle on a new contract on Aug. 20. The settlement marked an end … Continue reading

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Education vs. Incarceration: The Early Release Program in Illinois

With a current state budget deficit in Illinois of some $13 billion, among the largest in the country, state legislators are making tough decisions about where to save money. Recently, Governor Pat Quinn proposed an “early release” program for prison … Continue reading

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Odyssey Project

For the past four years, the Odyssey Project has offered a free-college accredited course in the humanities to workers and low-income men and women in Champaign County. Thanks to support from both the Illinois Humanities Council (IHC) and the University … Continue reading

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Valedictorian Speech From The Odyssey Project

Good Afternoon Friends, Family and Faculty. Thank you for taking time to celebrate with the 2010 Graduating class of the Odyssey Project. About 2-years ago I saw the Odyssey Program advertised in the News Gazette paper and I thought WOW, … Continue reading

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