PHOTOS: Citizens Take to the Streets to Demand School Funding

Demonstrators started at the Comcast Center, marched to City Hall and then to the School District headquarters in advance of the School Reform Commission meeting.

On Thursday, in anticipation of tonight’s final School Reform Commission meeting before the start of the school year, members of organizations such as Philadelphia Coalition Advocating for Public Schools (PCAPS) and Fight for Philly, as well as Philadelphians of all ages, races and walks of life dressed in Philadelphia Federation of Teachers red and gathered in front of the Comcast Center to begin an afternoon-long rally over the state of the schools. (Photos by Kelsey Veno)

At 3:30 p.m., the high-energy group of students, teachers, parents and other concerned Philadelphians began to shout their message at the 58-story Comcast Center: “We are here and ready to fight! Hey, Comcast! Do what’s right!” Demonstrators urged corporations who’ve received tax breaks to “pay their fair share” to support Philadelphia schools.

Spirits were high as the crowds in red spilled into the streets (above), blocking traffic and cheering on the passing cars that honked in support of the overarching chant of the day: “Fund our schools, save our schools.”

Speakers demanded that “millionaires pay their share” and insisted that “our Mayor and our Governor should work for the people, not for the big businesses.” The crowd planned to continue its protest at City Hall and urge Mayor Michael Nutter to fully fund the schools, and end their demonstration at School District of Philadelphia’s headquarters where the School Reform Commission was scheduled to meet.

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