Shantih Journal 3.1 - Page 95

NK: Up to now, we were placing our focus on the ballot initiative— Prop 207, InvestInEd. DW: But, recently, the Arizona Supreme Court decided to simply throw out Prop 207, which was expected to bring in an additional $960 million for Arizona public and charter schools. This was definitely a punch in the gut to the movement. What are your thoughts? NK: The Supreme Court decision to pull Proposition 207 from the ballot is absolutely baffling. Over 270,000 signatures were just thrown out by the court. Doing so denies citizens and teachers what they fought so hard for – the opportunity to fund our students and schools. In response, we have no option but to continue to act and fight for our students. In my eyes, this is just yet another example of the corruption present in the state and the need for continued activism from educators and education activists. This is not the end of our fight by any means, and we refuse to accept this corruption and will fight tirelessly for the funding that our students deserve. We still have momentum and we will continue to take action. It’s simple—as long as we need to advocate for public education, students, educators, and communities, we will. What that action will look like, I can’t say because I honestly don’t know. Right now, we’re mobilizing around the elections and several protest events. We have to change some seats in the Legislature. We need to put people who support education into office. We have a strong focus on that work and will also be continually mobilizing whenever we see fit in order to continue to bring changes to Arizona’s education system. DW: Thank you again for taking the time to speak with us. One final question: Shantih is a Sanskrit word which can roughly be translated into English as “peace”. How would you define “peace”? NK: Peace is living in perfect harmony with the world around you. The ultimate goal. 95