LA CASITA... CPS officials turn off gas in attempt to freeze out sit in on coldest night in Chicago in six months
NEWS FLASH: I just heard from "Sarah," who has already sent the following:
Miss Brooks Loves Books
We CAN change the world, and we can start by sending books to Chicago.
Word After Word After Word
Mirror Mirror: a book of reversible verse
Goldilocks and the Three Bears/Ricitos de Oro y los tres osos
Jack and the Beanstalk/Juan y los frijoles magicos
The Three Billy Goats Gruff/Los Tres Chivitos
The Three Little Pigs/Los tres cerditos
Ohanian Comment: You have probably heard about the parent uprising at La Casita, Whittier Elementary, a dual-language school in Chicago serving PreK-7 students. Parents have been sitting in a building adjacent to the school since Sept. 15, demanding a library. You can read about it here, where I've collected articles ranging from Substance (staff has been on the inside from the beginning) to the Wall Street Journal:
And below read the latest outrage against these parents (that happened last night).
Don't let the Chicago thugs win (again). Send books and/or money to La Casita.
A professional librarian is volunteering to help parents catalogue books. It is easy activism to send them books. You can "do good" in the world and at the same time help parents defy the power structure that is denying their children a library.
They can use any and all books, but I have prepared a mini-list of library and/or reading-themed books, as well as a few dual language and Spanish titles. This list, of course, barely scratches the surface but I thought it would give you some ideas.
It's important to send new books or cash. Kids in "those" schools shouldn't get raggedy cast-offs.
Chicago Underground Library
c/o Nell Taylor
PO Box 11444
Chicago, IL 60611-0444
YOU ARE WHAT YOU DO, NOT WHAT YOU SAY.
I'd like to keep track of this activist spirit, and I'd love to hear from you if you send a book or money.
Checks can be made out to
1735 w 21st pl, Chicago IL 60608
In memo please state donation for Whittier parent committee
Inside-Outside Book of Libraries, Roxie Munro
Library Lion, Michelle Knudsen
The Librarian of Basra: A True Story from Iraq, Jeanette Winter
Library Lil, Suzanne Williams/Steven Kellogg
Too Many Tamales, Gary Soto
The Old Man & His Door, Gary Soto
Crazy Loco, David Rice
I'm in Charge of Celebrations, Byrd Baylor
Martha Speaks, Susan Meddaugh
Dragon Poems, John Foster & Korky Paul
Sit-In: How Four Friends Stood Up by Sitting Down, Andrea Davis Pinkney/Brian Pinkney
Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice, Phillip Hoose
Listen to the Wind, Greg Mortenson/Susan Roth
Carl Sandburg: Adventures of a Poet, Penelope Niven
Ashley Bryan: Words to My Life's Song, Ashley Bryan
+ some nonfiction and some dual language books.
All book are welcome but I prepared this short list around a theme that might give you some ideas.
Tomas and the Library Lady by Pat Mora
Richard Wright and the Library Card by William Miller
The Library by Sarah Stewart
More than Anything Else, Marie Bradby
Library Mouse by Daniel Kirk
Please Bury Me in the Library by J. Patrick Lewis
The Library Dragon, Carmen Agra Deedy
Bats at the Library, Brian Lies
The Plot Chickens, Mary Jane Auch
Curious George Visits the Library, H. A. Rey
No T Rex in the Library, Tony Ruzzio
The Library Gingerbread Man, Dotti Enderle
A Book, Mordecai Gerstein
The Book that Eats People, John Perry
Stella Louella's Runaway Book, Lisa Campbell Ernst
Goldie Socks and the Three Libearians, Jackie Mims Hopkins
The Dreamer, Pam Munoz Ryan/Peter Sis
The Wednesday Surprise by Eve Bunting
Abuela by Arthur Dorris
Chatos Kitchen by Gary Soto
Harvesting Hope: The Story of Cesar Chavez, Kathleen Krull
A Pinata in a Pine Tree: A Latino Twelve Days of Christmas, Pat Mora
The Tooth Fairy Meets El Ratﾃャﾃｯﾂｿﾂｽﾃδｯﾃつｿﾃつｽﾃャﾃｯﾂｿﾂｽﾃモﾃつｳn Pﾃャﾃｯﾂｿﾂｽﾃδｯﾃつｿﾃつｽﾃャﾃｯﾂｿﾂｽﾃモﾃつｩrez , Rene Colato Lainez
Lola, Loufane Gladys Rosa-Mendoza
Bio Peep!: Traditional Spanish Nursery Rhymes, Alma Flor Ada; Alice Shertle
Richard Wright Y El Carne De Biblioteca / Richard Wright and the Library Card, William Miller
Done viven los monstruous, Maurice Sendak
No, David! David Shannon
Huevos verdes con jamon, Dr. Seuss/Aida E. Marcuse
El Gato en el sombrero, Dr. Seuss/Carlos Rivera
Oso pardo, oso pardo, que ves ahi? Bill Martin/Eric Carle/Teresa Mlawer
Jorge el curioso, H. A. Rey
Confetti: Poemas para ninos, Pat Mora
George N. Schmidt
Officials of the Chicago Public Schools continued their offensive against the sit-in demanding a library at "La Casita" (the Little House) adjacent to Whittier Elementary School at 1900 W. 23rd St. in Chicago's Pilsen neighborhood. On October 4, CPS ordered that the gas supply going into the field house building west of the main school building be turned off, resulting in a cold night for the protests who have been sitting in to get a school library since September 15. The latest ploy by Ron Huberman, Chief Executive Officer of Chicago's Public Schools, comes during the third week when Huberman and his political allies refuse to meet with the protesters.
Protesters noted the irony of the situation at the temperatures in Chicago dropped into the low 40s on the night of October 4 to 5. At least there is now a library for the children of Whittier, albeit a cold one. CPS officials have admitted that fifteen years after Chicago's imperial mayor, Richard M. Daley, took over the city's public schools system, a total of 160 schools don't have libraries for the children. While the Huberman administration is spending an addition $50 to $100 million this year on expanded testings for children from per-kindergarten through 12th grade and on a fad it calls "Performance Management", libraries are not a priority, and books for poor and working class children are out of the budget, again.
The cutoff of heat and power to the building comes after more than 1,000 books have been donated to La Casita, and after the children of the community have begun to use the library. Challenges to the various lies told by CPS spokesman Monique Bond and other CPS officials have gone under-reported in the corporate media in Chicago. These lies include the claim that the building is unsafe (when it is in fact simply in need of minor repairs, many of which have been done since the sit-in began) and that CPS has a "library" at Whittier (it's a thing called "Walking Library" where a teacher pushes a cart of books from room to room
George N. Schmidt