How What’s Happening to Education in California is Similar to Games of Thrones

On Sunday night, as millions prepared to watch the final episode of the series finale of Games of Thrones (GOT), I realized how similar the show is to what’s happening in education in California right now. I know that probably sounds odd to many reading this, and maybe you’re thinking, this girl has just watched too much GOT. I’m not going to say that’s not true, but allow me to explain the similarities.

When I think of the North, I think of all the different houses; Stark, Mormont, Karstark, etc. Individually they are very different, but they often get grouped together as the same. They do decide to unite because they have a shared enemy, who is relentlessly attacking them. And they decide their forces would be stronger if they fight back together, rather than separately. This is similar to what is happening with charter schools families throughout California right now. Many charter school parents, students, teachers, and staff members; have started to unite on Facebook and on different platforms throughout the state.  

The one who is attacking them, self righteously sits on the Iron Throne within the Red Keep. They are in power and they will do anything it takes to keep the power, including sabotaging the future of their own children. The leaders of this group, deceive their own people with half truths in order to inflict fear and keep their people loyal, even those who do not agree. And the ones that don’t agree, continue to “tow the line” because they don’t want to end up with their head on a spike. This is the dynamic that I have seen with some not wanting to upset the teachers unions and big labor.  

Even though Games of Thrones just ended, I don’t think we are that far along in this story yet. I think we are coming up on the “Battle of the Bastards”, where the north will fight to keep their home, just like charter school families are fighting to keep their schools. On Thursday, May 23, the Assembly will vote on the two bills (AB 1505 and AB 1506), that if passed, would leave no charter school safe from being shut down.
Unfortunately, charter families do not have the Knights of the Vail to come and rescue them after they take hit after hit in a battle that sometimes seems hopeless. However, you never know when someone will unexpectedly swoop in and join the fight. For charter school families, it may feel like a bleak time, especially since last week the Assembly voted to pass AB 1507, a bill that would severely impact homeschool charter families, 52-15. Even with these odds against us, my intuition still tells me that things could shift at any moment. As we often saw in GOT, overtime and after many losses, the oppressors are brought to justice, and the wheel does stop.

What do you think?
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Roxann Nazario

Roxann Nazario

Roxann Nazario is a charter parent living in the Northeast San Fernando Valley. Born and mostly raised in the Valley, Roxann experienced her own struggles as a student in LAUSD. In order to ensure that her daughter would receive the education she deserved, Roxann made sure she was an active parent volunteer at her daughter's charter school. From field trips, to book fairs, to her daughter's charter school renewal, Roxann has made a point not only to advocate for her daughter's education, but she advocates for all children attending LAUSD schools. She campaigned for Kelly Gonez during her campaign for school board member of board district 6. She fought against SB 808, a proposed bill that would deny charter schools the right to appeal if their charter was denied by their local school board. Even though Roxann's daughter attends an amazing and well-known charter school, the school did not have an active parent group. So Roxann teamed up with one of her fellow charter moms from the same school, and with the school's blessing, they started a parent group called, "Parent Voice." Most recently, she was involved in a "Teach-In"/Rally in front of the California Democratic Party Convention that took place in San Diego in February of this year to advocate against the California Democratic Party passing a moratorium resolution on charter schools. Roxann and five fellow charter school mothers, all from board district 6, are being awarded with the Hart Vision Award for Parent Volunteer of the Year at the 25th Annual California Charter Schools Conference taking place on Tuesday, March 27, 2018.

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