Hi all! I am back in Chicago, and have been contracting at a political PR media firm called Adelstein Liston.  We have just started a big PR media campaign for American Federation of Teachers.

It’s all over the news. We are in the midst of a huge national education funding crisis.  Teachers are being laid off and schools are closing across the country. Teacher layoffs, according to reports on the Today Show, April 22, 2010, include 15,000 in New York City, 17,000 in Illinois and 22,000 in California. Total national reports of layoffs top 300,000 teachers by the end of the school year.

AFT is the national umbrella organization for all the local teachers unions. They have launched a national media campaign to fight back against teacher layoffs. This consists of radio ads, billboards, signs on buses directing people to websites for each city where heartfelt testimonials from teachers and parents stress the importance of keeping teachers, keeping class sizes reasonable, and exploring alternative savings options to balance school districts’ budgets.

I recently finished cutting videos for the Cleveland campaign website. Please see the “Our Heroes” and “Our Supporters” sections.  The Teachers testimonial video is also pasted above. Post continues here…

In addition to the individual city campaigns, I cut six videos used at the national level, composed of new clips, interviews, rally footage, and action campaigns from across the country.  One of these was for the Pink Hearts Not Pink Slips campaign (see website).  This campaign began in San Francisco where a couple of concerned parents responded to teacher layoffs by putting a chair with a pink heart attached to it for each teacher handed a pink slip.  The campaign spread nationwide, with pink heart buttons, t-shirts, facebook buttons, and flyers representing solidarity between parents, community, and teachers.

Education is so important to America’s future.  It is so devastating that the communities with the most desperate need for better education are the ones being impacted most by these cuts.  I felt very honored to help teachers communicate their messages of concern and rally for support on this critical issue.

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