DETROIT (WWJ) – The UAW will join Danny Glover at the Catherine Ferguson Academy (CFA) Thursday to protest the planned closing of the school, which serves pregnant teenagers and young mothers and their children. The rally will begin at noon with a press conference and events to follow.
New Detroit Public School Emergency Manager Roy Roberts has notified CFA’s principal that the school is slated for closure at the end of this school year.
Prior Emergency Manager Robert Bobb also scheduled the school to close earlier this year, resulting in students fighting back and occupying their school. Recently, two teen moms were accused of trespassing after refusing to leave the school during a spring break sit-in in April.
Roberts’ plan to radically restructure Detroit schools to reduce operating costs includes the possibility of closing over 40 schools, including CFA, costing the loss of jobs for more than 2,000 school employees throughout the Detroit public school system.
“The UAW supports CFA’s mission to give pregnant teens and parenting students a chance to finish high school, get prepared for college and get a good start on early education for their children,” said UAW President Bob King and Vice President Cindy Estrada, director of the UAW Women’s Department, in a joint statement.
“CFA uses small classes, alternative school scheduling and health care for the students and babies as a way to ensure these mothers graduate and break the cycle of poverty. The school has a 90 percent graduate rate and all CFA graduates go on to college. This school has a proven track record and Detroit needs this innovative, successful school to stay open,” the statement concluded.