SOS group fights back

Pamela Vonfriesen

The Save Our Schools coalition is a consolidation of various campus organizations and clubs working together to give a voice to community college students in response to California’s education budget cuts on education.

“SOS is here to encourage California legislators to provide alternatives to cutting programs for the poor, as they have in the last year,” Sidney Martinez, co-founder of SOS, said. “We’re here trying to improve our situations by going to college; the cutting of education funds hits us the hardest.” “SOS is here to organize concerned students, and let the governor know that we are not happy.”

Some of the clubs in SOS are Promethean Workers Association (PWA), Bring Education & Activism Together (BEAT) and Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Aztlan (MEChA), among others.

Co-founder of SOS Josef Shannon, said he feels that “the coalition seems to be making an impact, at least among City College students.”

Earlier in the month, the coalition led a march of 250 students, staff and faculty from campus to the City Works Building on 370 Front St. SOS also in-part planned the Nov. 20 budget cut protest that took place in Balboa Park.

Future events in the works include a letter writing campaign Dec. 19 called “All I Want for the Holidays is My Two-Year Degree.” The coalition plans to deliver a cheery bright bag of these letters by a Santa-dressed messenger to Governor Schwarzenegger.

Upon return from the Holiday Break, SOS plans to stage another rally in protest of the upcoming cuts of more classes in the spring.

When asked how City College students can help improve the education cut landscape, Martinez is encouraging students, faculty and staff to get involved and attend the SOS meetings in the cafeteria on Tuesdays at 3:30 p.m.

“We can fix this,” Martinez said.

One of the groups promotional flyer says, “Let’s make our voices heard and tell our governator enough is enough! Hasta La Vista Budget Cuts!”