Schools on the Chopping Block

PASSHE chancellor warns legislature, some schools could soon be broke

PASSHE chancellor warns legislature, some schools could soon be broke

The chancellor has been hinting for some time now that some campuses may “need” to be closed. Cheney, Mansfield, Clarion, and Edinboro have all been named in this connection. If any of these dire warnings should come to pass, towns like Clarion will simply blow away.

In our district, Donna Oberlander and Scott Hutchinson have done little to stop the damage caused by a decade of strangulation-by-budget, nor have Rep. Thompson and Sen. Toomey. In fact, none of our Republican lawmakers have been seen anywhere near the front lines trying to defend higher education in this state—and the same goes for our area elementary and secondary schools, which are struggling helplessly as well.

What you can do about it is call your state representatives, frequently, to let them know that the fate of our schools and students is in their hands and on their heads. Feeding industry by starving students is not the way of great nations.

Titusville Update

It looks like we have our answer from Rep. Thompson. The demonstration in Titusville was reported in a number of places. This story from The Titusville Herald, quoting Thompson’s communications director, tells us all we need to know about our representative’s position on dissent (emphasis mine):

“Pennsylvania’s 5th Congressional district is larger than the state of New Jersey. So, when he is not in Washington, Congressman Thompson is on the road meeting with constituents or taking meetings in his Bellefonte and Titusville offices. Last year alone he hosted more than 1,000 constituent meetings. Mr. Thompson is a problem solver and welcomes all constituents to meet with him, voice their concerns, find common ground, and generate homegrown solutions to the challenges facing our country. However, he will not provide a venue for a few vocal activists to create a spectacle. Those individuals have all been offered meetings with the Congressman, yet many have declined to attend.

It turns out that Daily Kos posted about the event as well (here’s the link). The post included a shot from inside the crowded office:


A Visit to Rep. Thompson’s Office

On Valentine’s Day, Indivisible We Rise (five of us, anyway) made a trip to Rep. Glenn Thompson’s office in Titusville for an action orchestrated by Dan Doubet of Keystone Progress. About 25-30 people showed up to demand that our elusive representative hold a live Town Hall event with his constituents in Erie. (I will post the details on that when I can confirm the date.)

Thompson’s staff were certainly not expecting us when we began crowding into their tiny office. Our Clarion group was among the first to get in the door, so I was able to hand a letter to Rep. Thompson detailing the concerns of Indivisible We Rise members directly to his office manager.

The engagement was boisterous but cordial, and his staff were accommodating. (It seems they—or someone—called the cops when we first arrived, though, but they never came inside the building, as the situation was clearly non-confrontational; we discovered them outside when we left the building.)

A good day was had by all. As to results, we’ll have to wait and see whether Rep. Thompson deigns to attend the Town Hall that Keystone Progress has arranged for him…



Indivisible We Rise/West Central Pennsylvania is a locally-formed chapter of Indivisible, a national grassroots organization dedicated to watching for –and resisting–any and all efforts by the Trump administration to undermine our democracy with racist, authoritarian, unconstitutional, and/or corrupt actions.

You’ll feel much better in a group of like-minded people calmly and persistently working to resist.  Hey, it beats yelling at the TV!

NOTE TO VISITORS: This blog is brand-spankin’ new, so if you are browsing around wondering where the furniture is, IT’S ON THE WAY!  Just give us a few days to move in…