Over 110 actions in over 90 U.S. Cities to Demand Tuition-Free Higher Education, End of Student Debt, and $15/Hour Minimum Wage for Campus Employees
Million Student March is a grassroots effort, organized at the local level by existing campus and activist groups as well as new coalitions and organizations formed specifically for Nov. 12. MSM is coordinated at the national level by a committee responsible for administration and communications, and that produces organizing materials and builds relationships with other activist groups and unions. The national committee does not oversee the political expressions and organizing happening on the ground, which are up to participating groups to shape for themselves.
What: Million Student March is a decentralized call-to-action in response to the destruction of the U.S. education system. We are calling on students, teachers, school-workers, community members, student-debtors, and those denied access to education to take action on November 12th. This is an invitation to participate in a nationwide day of local marches, rallies and speak-outs, focused around three overlapping demands:
- Tuition-Free Public Higher Education from Community College to Graduate School
- Cancellation of All Student Debt
- $15/Hour Minimum Wage for All Campus Employees
We welcome local and participating groups to discuss, add to, and modify these demands, so long as they are not watered down. Our movements are stronger when we move together.
When: November 12th, 2015, all day.
Where: Over 110 actions, happening across 34 states, in over 90 U.S. cities, as well as solidarity protests oversees.
Why: Education is a human right. Yet, while numerous countries around the world provide free high-quality, debt free education for their people–U.S. students, teachers and school-workers are suffering. The U.S. needs free college!
Million Student March has been endorsed by US Uncut, Noam Chomsky, Socialist Alternative, Green Party Presidential candidate Jill Stein, Peoples Power Assemblies-NYC, Student Labor Action Project, 15 Now, Students for Free Tuition, and the United States Student Association, among others.
“What we have in the United States is a pay-to-play education system for the rich. A system that excludes poor and working class students, especially students of color and those from traditionally oppressed and marginalized communities,” explains James Andrews.
For example, at the City University of New York (CUNY), a system with a historic mission to serve the poor and working class of NYC, tuition and fees have increased almost 40% (to $6,330 per year) since just 2010, and the percentage of university costs covered by state and federal funding has plummeted since the 1990s. So at the same time student services such as childcare and community centers are being eliminated, administrative bloat, corporate influence and poverty are spreading throughout the system, just as in the wider society.
This crisis is stemming from years of government and private sector abuse, cuts to education, Wall Street influence in the form of the corporatization of education, and militarization among other factors.
Keely Mullen, an organizer for 15 Now, says, “Our country has abandoned its responsibility to educate future generations. Today we are dealing with a curriculum that reflects a corporate agenda, outrageous university tuitions and fees, massive student debt, and a K-12 public education system under attack by budget cuts, charter schools, standardized tests, and the school-to-prison-pipeline. I feel that not only are these issues are interconnected they are rooted to our history of military and political aggression. We cannot stand-by any longer while our education system is destroyed from within. It’s time to take action”
For more information about Million Student March or to get involved visit studentmarch.org.