Category: Event

What is the educational effect of the people’s bailout?

The People’s Bailout, a telethon happening this Thursday, is the beginning of the Rolling Jubilee, which buys unjust debt and abolishes it. This project of StrikeDebt, an OWS group committed to the creation of local, national, and international debt resistance movements, effects many facets of society and politics. It’s gotten HUGE media attention in the last few days.

A question for discussion: How does this project, and debt resistance generally, effect education?

Debt and Study

Two interesting pieces on debt and education making the rounds today. One from Princeton, who announced that their financial aid program allows students to graduate without debt. 

“Princeton undergraduates are not required to take out loans to pay the costs of attendance. Their financial needs are met through a combination of grant aid and summer and term-time earnings, with the average aid package for the Class of 2016 consisting of $37,600 in grants and $2,100 for a campus job.”

The second is an essay called “Debt and Study” by Fred Moten and Stefano Harney.

“They say we have too much debt. We need better
credit, more credit, less spending. They offer us
credit repair, credit counseling, microcredit,
personal financial planning. They promise to
match credit and debt again, debt and credit. But
our debts stay bad. We keep buying another
song, another round. It is not credit that we seek,
nor even debt, but bad debt – which is to say real
debt, the debt that cannot be repaid, the debt at
a distance, the debt without creditor, the black
debt, the queer debt, the criminal debt.
Excessive debt, incalculable debt, debt for no
reason, debt broken from credit, debt as its own

McTeacher’s Night

At this event, teachers put on McDonald’s aprons and serve McDonald’s food to students and parents from the school community. Part of the night’s profits go to the school district.

(From the website) In March, McDonald’s Restaurants in the St. Louis/Metro East Area partnered with educators to raise money for schools in Missouri and Illinois. Over the past nine years, McTeacher’s Night has provided students, faculty and parents with the opportunity to increase school pride and generate funds for their school by allowing them to take over a McDonald’s location from 4-8 p.m., with a percentage of the sales going directly to their school. Since the inception of McTeacher’s Night in 2003, local McDonald’s Restaurants have raised more than half-a-million dollars to benefit area schools.

All school levels (elementary, middle and senior high schools) were represented on McTeacher’s Night, including public, private and parochial schools. “This was a great social and fundraising event for our parents and students,” said one local principal. “The manager and staff were tremendous!”

McTeacher’s Night takes place at participating McDonald’s Restaurants in Missouri and the surrounding areas twice a year. The next McTeacher’s Night will take place on October 2nd, 2012. If you are interested in participating in McTeacher’s Night, please contact your local McDonald’s.

Summer 2012 – SDS & OTS

Summer Disobedience School  OccU is facilitating educational encounters at the Summer Disobedience School in collaboration with the OWS Direct Action working group. Come find us at three different public squares every Saturday at 3pm, after the action. Summer Disobedience School is now over.  We graduated!

Occupy Town Square  OccU will be attending Occupy Town Squares all throughout summer in different boroughs of New York City. Check the website for locations and encounters. (If you’re interested in facilitating an encounter or testing out a course idea, let us know at!)

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Tonight at Horizontal Pedagogy–Marx and Hindu mystical poetry

Hi everyone! At tonight’s Horizontal Pedagogy meeting we’ll be discussing two short texts, a passage from Capital and a poem by Allama Prabhu (along with anything anyone else brings along!):

“That labourer alone is productive, who produces surplus value for the  capitalist, and thus works for the self-expansion of capital. If we take an  example from outside the sphere of production of material objects, a  schoolmaster is a productive laborer, when, in addition to belabouring the heads of his scholars, he works like a horse to enrich the school proprietor. That the latter has laid out his capital in a teaching factory, instead of in a sausage factory, does not alter the relation.”

(Marx, Capital, p.511, penguin international complete works)


A little bee born
in the heart’s lotus
flew out and swallowed
the sky

In the breeze
of his wing, three worlds
turned upside down.

the cage of the five-colored swan
was broken, the bee fell
to the ground with broken wings.

Living among your men,
O Lord of Caves
I saw the lovely tactic
of truth’s coming on.

–Allama Prabhu, from Speaking of Siva

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This Thursday in Horizontal Pedagogy–“Issues in Pedagogy”

This Thursday, Horizontal Pedagogy will meet at 8pm in the Trump Atrium (590 Madison Ave). Our theme will be “Issues in Pedagogy.” If you’re planning on coming, bring along a text that has to do with ways of teaching. 

Bring anything you want! We’ll present them to the group and consense on what we’ll discuss.

For my part, I’ll be bringing the following image, which is a picture of a relief carved on the side of Chartres Cathedral from ~1140.

I’ll also include the following paragraphs with it that explain what’s in the picture:

…why was Grammar so frequently armed with a body striker? Two reasons
stand out as probabilities. First, grammar was traditionally recognized as
the foundational subject of the curriculum. It was foundational in two
senses. Knowledge of Latin grammar was prerequisite to the study of
rhetoric and logic. Grammar, wrote John of Salisbury, is the art which
“prepares the mind to understand everything that can be taught in words.”
Therefore, it was the teacher of elementary grammar who met the youngest,
least experienced students. He also saw the largest number of students.
This placed a special burden of socialization on the teacher of grammar.
His was the task of whipping raw recruits into shape. Habits of
concentration, habits of subordinating impulses and appetites to study had
to be fostered. Wandering attention had to be disciplined. Just so,
Grammar’s watchful eye must not ignore the errant hand of the little tyke
at Chartres who pulls his colleague’s hair.

A second plausible reason for arming Grammar with an instrument of control
or punishment relates to the fact that grammar was the division of the
curriculum to which moral instruction was assigned. Studies of medieval
textbooks and curriculum descriptions have confirmed this point. “What is a
scholar?” the beginning student is asked in a popular dialogue. “Somebody
who earnestly and diligently applies himself to the virtues,” is the
correct response.

*–From the lecture on “Grammar” at ***

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