Paly teachers participate in 'Day Without a Woman' protest

Action coincides with International Women's Day to highlight economic value of women

On Wednesday morning, instead of heading to campus, Palo Alto High School special-education teacher Laura Bricca went to the home of a fellow staff member for a "women's brunch." They were among about 30 Paly teachers absent from their classrooms in observance of Wednesday's national "Day Without a Woman" protest, meant to highlight both the economic value of women and barriers they face.

The day of action — coinciding with International Women's Day — is an outgrowth of the Women's March on Washington, a national activism effort organized in protest of President Donald Trump. On Wednesday, the group called on women to take the day off, avoid shopping for the day (with exceptions for small, women- and minority-owned businesses) or to wear red in solidarity.

The strike recognizes "the enormous value that women of all backgrounds add to our socio-economic system -- while receiving lower wages and experiencing greater inequities, vulnerability to discrimination, sexual harassment, and job insecurity," the Women's March website states. Similarly, the group organized a "Day Without Immigrants" protest in February.

At Paly, 35 teachers and staff members are absent Wednesday in addition to five who are out sick and five who are off campus for professional development, according to district communications officer Jorge Quintana. (The average number of teachers out on a regular day at Paly is 10 to 12, he said.) All 31 classrooms without teachers are covered by substitute teachers.

Paly journalism teacher Esther Wojcicki told the Weekly she took the day off to make a statement in protest of the president's stance on women and women's rights, particularly his recent offer to maintain federal funding for Planned Parenthood if they stop providing abortions.

Her absence is a "statement that women's rights need to be respected," she said.

Recognizing it is a teacher's role to be politically neutral, she said she plans to explain to her students when she returns that participating in the day of action was a personal decision.

"Teachers have to be impartial, but we do have the right to an opinion," she said. "We have First Amendment rights and I took advantage of those rights."

Paly Principal Kim Diorio said many staff and students are wearing red and that she has been part of many "great conversations around campus" on Wednesday.

"A teachable moment for all," she wrote in an email to the Weekly.

Paly is the only Palo Alto Unified school that has been significantly impacted by the Day Without a Woman protest, according to the district. Gunn High School Principal Denise Herrmann said as of 10 p.m. on Tuesday night, the school did not have any absences that had not been approved weeks in advance.

Teri Baldwin, president of the Palo Alto Educators Association, said the teachers union sent a message out suggesting teachers could wear red in solidarity.

Across the country, striking teachers led some schools to cancel classes for the day, including in Virginia, New York, Maryland and North Carolina.


Follow the Palo Alto Weekly/Palo Alto Online on Twitter @PaloAltoWeekly and Facebook for breaking news, local events, photos, videos and more.


119 people like this
Posted by Another woman's opinon
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Mar 8, 2017 at 12:54 pm

The women that stayed away from school on purpose, no matter the reason, put themselves over the best interest of our children.

Let them stay away, for good. No one is irreplaceable.

52 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Downtown North
on Mar 8, 2017 at 12:57 pm

After Donald Trump's comments about getting away with assaulting women, these women's' rights demonstrations go way beyond politics. I applaud these teachers for taking a stand and creating a teachable moment for their students.

51 people like this
Posted by standing with the teachers
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Mar 8, 2017 at 12:58 pm

Kudos to these teachers for showing their students a great example of participating in a democracy and standing up for women's rights. I believe that is in the "best interests" of our children.

69 people like this
Posted by john_alderman
a resident of Crescent Park
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:06 pm

john_alderman is a registered user.

Kind of odd behavior for one of the most regressively anti-male institutions. Can we get some male kindergarten teachers please?

24 people like this
Posted by Paloaltogirl1958
a resident of University South
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:10 pm

I'm wearing red today because I serve very young children and can't take the day off As a Paly alum and mother of alums, I am proud of the faculty demonstrating the importance of women through their absence. [Portion removed.]

18 people like this
Posted by john_alderman
a resident of Crescent Park
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:13 pm

john_alderman is a registered user.

[Post removed.]

102 people like this
Posted by Mom
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:19 pm

Being irresponsible and skipping work is laziness. Students shouldn't be taught such lack of discipline and impulsivity. When my hardworking children become CEOs and managers, they will have to deal with this sort of crap from their snowflake employees.

74 people like this
Posted by Agreed!
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:22 pm

I agree wholeheartedly with Mr Alderman. Palo Alto schools are notably anti-male, and it starts in kindergarten, with female teachers who do not hide the fact that they dislike little boys.
It REALLY peaks in middle school, and is one of the reasons PA middle schools are so rotten.

Male teachers, from kindergarten up, are badly needed in this district. Boys need strong, positive role models, and they have very, very few here.

I know that PAUSD teachers turned my own son into someone who has little respect for women, especially those in middle age.

He did NOT learn this at home... it developed over a ten-year period in PAUSD.

For the rest of my life, I will regret not spending the money to put him in a private school, even if it meant selling our house and living somewhere less expensive.

The biggest mistake of my life was buying a home in PA so that my son could go to PA schools. I never dreamed the teachers would be so mean to little boys with mild learning disabilities

29 people like this
Posted by Susan
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 8, 2017 at 1:42 pm

I you want to oppose this crazy action by women teachers at Paly, you can exempt yourself from the parcel tax, if you qualify. You will save a bunch of money, and make your political point! See the following link:

Web Link

57 people like this
Posted by Scotty
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 8, 2017 at 2:07 pm

With the current budget shortfall, these teachers may soon have an abundance of time with which to protest. Hope someone took attendance.

Posted by Charlie
a resident of Crescent Park

on Mar 8, 2017 at 2:16 pm

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33 people like this
Posted by Mom
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 8, 2017 at 2:20 pm

@Agreed: If your child has learning disabilities, public school was not the right place for him. He should have been in a small, private school. There is a school for learning disabilities in Belmont. Across the nation, most K-6 teachers are female so you can't blame PAUSD.

"Boys need strong, positive role models, and they have very, very few here." How about his father? How about sports coaches? Paly has its share of male teachers. Blaming the entire school district is misguided thinking.

Female teachers do not dislike little boys, as I have two sons and they are fine. Teachers in general do not like misbehaved boys who have parents who don't teach them proper social skills. The children who are disruptive and bullied are often students who have parents who don't teach their children proper interaction skills, according to my children.

36 people like this
Posted by PAUSD Parent
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 8, 2017 at 2:38 pm

I'm really shocked at the negative attitudes expressed over this one day of protest/recognition.

35 people like this
Posted by Supporter
a resident of another community
on Mar 8, 2017 at 4:12 pm

Thumbs up for the teachers!

81 people like this
Posted by shocking politics
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 8, 2017 at 4:43 pm

I view this as a shocking politicization of public education. PALY teachers should be at work today, not out protesting. We all know this is a "surrogate" or "substitute" for protesting Trump. I don't like Trump myself, but I am not a public school teacher, who should confine one's politics to ones-self rather than impose it on school kids, who have a power imbalance with the teacher. This is an abuse of power, at the taxpayer's expense, and at the expense of impressionable kids (even teens, who wish to be "cool"). Meanwhile, I support equal rights for women in all respects, but public education should be neutral rather than politicized. The students will certainly know why their teachers were away, make no mistake.

55 people like this
Posted by Susan
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 8, 2017 at 5:15 pm

@ PAUSD Parent: I am a bit shocked that you are shocked. Why are you so shocked? If men took a day off at PAUSD, athletics and math and history classes would collapse. Oh, and if the bathrooms get plugged, imagine the outrage! And if the students decide to get out of control, and there are no men around, who is going to take care of it (since the police will be without men, too, are the women going to get tough on them (especially the teenage boys)? Beyond that, what if men in our armed services announce that they will give up the fight for the day...surely, ISIS will take advantage.

As a woman, I am very grateful to have men protect me. Women need to get over their whining.

34 people like this
Posted by Wollstonecraft
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Mar 8, 2017 at 5:26 pm

Right on! Go teachers! If solidarity with women and women's rights seems like a proxy for being anti-Trump well I'd blame the assaulter-in-chief for that. He earned that sexist reputation so clearly on his own. At this point I'd be much more concerned about my kids in the classroom of a teacher seen in public with a red MAGA hat. But of course, freedom of speech. I'm kidding, I'm not worried about teachers having political opinions as long as their classes are places for inquiry and critical thinking, balanced and fair. Maybe we should all worry less about what the teachers think, thank them for the job they do, and all worry a bit more that Putin's puppet is trashing health care and the environment and the Constitution. And as long as the teachers made plans and had subs they have a certain number of release days that aren't your concern unless they break the law or something like that.

71 people like this
Posted by dock their pay
a resident of Community Center
on Mar 8, 2017 at 5:42 pm

if you want to protest do it on your own time. Hopefully they get their pay reduced (although I doubt it) . Teachers thinking only of themselves. Sorry just saying......

66 people like this
Posted by Paly parent
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 8, 2017 at 5:57 pm

The absentee women and Diorio are extremely hypocritical, especially after all the grief Paly give students regarding skipping school.

24 people like this
Posted by Scotty
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 8, 2017 at 6:50 pm

[Post removed.]

33 people like this
Posted by Bob
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 8, 2017 at 7:03 pm

Will be interesting to hear about all of the oppression and low pay that these teachers have witnessed at the PAUSD. If they can't provide any testimony to that end -- what exactly did they take the day off to protest?

51 people like this
Posted by Max
a resident of Southgate
on Mar 8, 2017 at 7:38 pm

What's the date of A Day Without A Man?

9 people like this
Posted by Stevie
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 8, 2017 at 10:12 pm

[Post removed.]

11 people like this
Posted by iSez
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 8, 2017 at 10:31 pm

iSez is a registered user.

[Post removed.]

28 people like this
Posted by observer
a resident of Barron Park
on Mar 8, 2017 at 10:40 pm

If anyone ever wanted to tackle the difference between Gunn and paly, the facts of yesterday speak for themselves...

24 people like this
Posted by RIght move
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Mar 8, 2017 at 11:23 pm

You'd think students endured something awful today if you read most of these comments. Instead, it seems to me they discovered that some of their teachers believe strongly in women's rights and wanted to join in symbolically to make the point with people around the country. Amazing, huh? And the "dock their pay" response is kind of ignorant. Teachers have a certain number of days they can be absent for personal reasons. If they wanted to make this their personal reason, so be it. Newsflash, sometimes they use up a day to extending a weekend to travel to a family event, or they're taking care of a family member, or whatever. That's how it goes. They didn't take anything they weren't entitled to. Later in the year if they don't have personal days left when they need one, they'll either suck it up, or have their pay docked.

38 people like this
Posted by Carrie
a resident of Downtown North
on Mar 9, 2017 at 3:18 am

Deduct this day from their salary.

112 people like this
Posted by Kelli Hagen
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 9, 2017 at 6:25 am

Thank you for the kind support for those who commented positively. I too participated in a Day Without a Woman yesterday and practiced my first amendment right to protest. As stated above, I used one of my Personal Necessity days that I had earned. Coming up to the day, I used the opportunity as a teaching moment in my classroom. I explained that we all have a voice and that the first amendment protects the right to use our voice. I explained that students, too have a voice, and I hope that they learn to use theirs- that they learn to be strong, vocal advocates for themselves.

The idea that we would take the day off because we are lazy or that we are setting a poor example for your kids is preposterous. I love my job, I love my students and I have grand hopes for all of my students. I participated in this day to model my first amendment rights so that my younger friends will understand the power that they have. When we give our heart to teach all of our kids’ life lessons that will serve them well, you should rally and support us. I am certain that the negative comments will follow, but I will say, they are not representative of the support I feel in my classroom or from the parent community. I think they are the vocal minority.

61 people like this
Posted by Jessica
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 9, 2017 at 9:10 am

Every one of the negative comments above shares the common denominator of privilege. Criticizing these teachers for taking a stand against a plethora of issues that not only impact themselves but their students is preposterous. Did the incidents of sexual harassment of students (by male teachers and principals in this school district) in years past bother you at all? Does gender-based violence and rape culture bother you at all (especially parents who have daughters heading off to college)?

To say that the teachers were lazy when in fact they were leveraging the political power that they have and are entitled to is ignorant. If you can't wrap your head around why taking a stand against issues that concern women (AND men) is critical, then you should really think about why that is. Perhaps you are so fortunate to be in a place where such issues don't affect you, but that isn't to say they aren't affecting everyone else.

I am grateful for the teachers that stood in solidarity yesterday and used the day as a teaching moment for our children. Thank you!

45 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 9, 2017 at 9:38 am

This women's group doesn't speak for me or the other 43-46% of women in American who voted for Trump.

17 people like this
Posted by Woman
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Mar 9, 2017 at 10:05 am

Yes, there are some people (lots of people) who receive less than their fair share in life. They may have different colored skins, or different types of plumbing, or perhaps a different capacity of ability, or learning difficulties. In fact, I think there are a majority of us who feel that in some way we have been dealt an unfair hand.

However, going on "strike" or marching is not going to do anything to change their lives or even the perception of how they manage to live their lives and overcome their obstacles in life. The way to overcome them is to live life to the full, giving as much as taking, smiling instead of whining, seeing the positives in life rather than the negatives, and making the world a better place for everyone in the various circles.

If you look at what ordinary people suffer in other countries, religious persecution, female circumcision, forced abortions, forced rapes, stonings, and so on and so forth, I don't think there are many people around here who have it too bad.

I suggest that today we have a celebration of people. People who work hard every day with complaining. People who always give back to society without expecting reward or fanfare. People who are constantly looking out for their neighbors. People who overcome the obstacles in their lives. People who look on each new day as a celebration of life. People who surround themselves for the positives in life rather than the negatives they encounter.

To all those wonderful people out there, I celebrate you today and I hope that my children turn into adults who make for positive role models by example to their peers and their own children.

23 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Mar 9, 2017 at 10:15 am

Don't any of these people realize that they already have rights? I grew up in the Los Angeles Unified School district during the 50's and 60's. Due to the abundance of manufacturing all colors had good jobs, the blacks were in the middle-class. This somehow fell apart due to activists. Activists have to have a cause and if lacking one will create one - so they can wallow in it and "solve" it. All I see now are people with a "cause". What is the point of the cause - what are they trying to solve that has not already been solved. One of the great benefits of working for a profit oriented company is the path forward is clear - the cost of the path clear - and the goal clear. No one in that environment gets points for creating a mess so they can fix it. In the PAUSD the requirements to prepare a child to excel in school subjects is clear. The path should be clear. But somehow the path is muddy due to political and religious interference.

50 people like this
Posted by Paly Dad
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Mar 9, 2017 at 11:50 am

Only in Palo Alto does a day of protest with Brunch! How about going and helping homeless woman at a shelter instead of skipping school to have brunch or stand on a street corner. I'm afraid that the lesson my kids learned was protest or skip school when you are unhappy about something. All are entitled to their opinion and right to speak out but please do it on your own time. Paly leadership wanted to cancel school the day after the election and now this....where does it stop?

13 people like this
Posted by outsider
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 9, 2017 at 12:52 pm

LOL... a teacher championing the vocal minority and then slamming them. So funny. I am happy to see my kids think for themselves and not rely on group rule. Good for the principal for supporting her teachers, and now she needs to make sure the subs have lesson plans and there are not tests before teachers can check for understanding. HOw about having girls take over the classes with prepared lectures? something fun like that and positive. Hope this happens again next year and we can work out the glitches. maybe my kid is in the minority that has given up 30 hours of instructional time. so far this semester and has gladly taken up the slack. I hope so! A very odd thing is that my kid said she wanted all male teachers next year so she will be prepared better. OK... that is not funny.

43 people like this
Posted by Scotty
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 9, 2017 at 12:57 pm

If teaching your students about empowerment involves shirking your professional responsibility and wearing hats shaped like your anatomy or waving signs with four letter words on them, you probably shouldn't "teach". Empowerment is a positive thing. Teach that to your students/daughters. What you are doing is continued bitterness and anger over an outcome you did not like.

21 people like this
Posted by Suggest Voting
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 9, 2017 at 1:21 pm

Kelli Hagen: Although I disagree with your belief, thank you for using one of your Personal Necessity days. I hope the students didn't miss out on a lecture that will affect knowledge for the next test (not being facetious).

One more important thing that our teachers can teach is the importance of voting. Otherwise, we'll have a bunch of snowflakes who complain but don't vote, such as Colin Kaepernick, who isn't even registered to vote.

There is a CA legislator who is suggesting that we have the day off to vote, which is a great idea.

My grandparents came from China legally to the U.S. and still at death, did not speak English. However, as citizens, they voted, using a translator and memorizing their votes prior to walking into the booth. They were happy for the opportunity to vote as citizens.

Meanwhile, we have Americans who have decades of citizenship but do not vote. Hopefully, Trump has shaken up the apathy for voting. And remember everyone, that we are living in a country where everyone wants to live, even a city which is highly desired. Do something other than complaining about your First World problems. There are plenty who have succeeded against odds. My grandparents who never spoke English succeeded. Lick your wounds and move on.

6 people like this
Posted by Marc Vincenti
a resident of Gunn High School
on Mar 9, 2017 at 1:41 pm

So “A Day Without Women” became a day with fewer teachers at Paly.

People on all sides, for many different reasons, have cause to be upset.

But at least from the perspective or our high-school faculty members, and what they may be feeling--including their feelings about the district and community that are their employers--I'd like to offer some insight for the Palo Altans who lack the opportunity to talk with teachers in great number.

In the fall of 2015, while consulting with hundreds of community members about a new secondary school at Cubberley, Mr. McGee’s district committee sought input from exactly two teachers at Gunn and exactly none at Paly. (Even though the project would have had substantial professional impact on teachers.)

Teachers went virtually un-consulted in the 2010 founding of Project Safety Net.

The PAUSD refuses to supply its high-school teachers with an efficient way to find out, every night, how many minutes their kids are spending on homework assignments (a proposal for this, "Clocktalk," has been rejected by the superintendent for more than two years).

Reportedly, our high-school faculties were adequately consulted in the formation of the district’s homework policy but in actual fact they weren’t. Out of our some 200 high-school teachers, only eight were part of the district’s Feb. 2016 focus groups for the CDC.

Routinely, teachers are under-represented on the panels for community forums regarding teen well-being.

During our suicide clusters, virtually no one in the community sent condolences to those adults who had not only lost beloved students but remained on duty in the classroom all day with grief-stricken teenagers.

Gunn is cutting faculty stipends for writing letters of recommendation, damaging kids’ hopes for letters marked by the extra attentiveness that might affect an admissions officer.

Last year’s pay increase for teachers nevertheless opens no doors into the city’s housing market-no way for teachers to easily attend evening meetings with parents, or to cheer their students on at concerts, plays, and sporting events.

Worst of all, our teachers are saddled with the discouraging knowledge that if they ever staged “A Day Without Teachers” the community’s loudest outrage would not be that our high-schoolers were being shortchanged a good education, or were missing out on preparation to serve our democracy, but were being hobbled in their race for a higher G.P.A.

Under these circumstances--in which many in the community are pushing teachers away, holding them at arm's length, devaluing their input--it would be unrealistic to hope that the teachers would be forming bonds of attachment and affection toward Gunn and Paly that would override all other attachments and causes and concerns.

It would be unrealistic, that's all. Human beings just aren't made that way.

Marc Vincenti
Chairman, Save the 2,000 (a community alliance, 500-strong, to create hope for Palo Alto's high-schoolers)

4 people like this
Posted by Garden Gnome
a resident of Crescent Park
on Mar 9, 2017 at 2:10 pm

[Post removed.]

17 people like this
Posted by MyOpinion
a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2017 at 2:27 pm

I most definitely did NOT vote for Trump and to think he is POTUS makes me sick to my stomach, but it is irresponsible to take an unplanned day off especially when your job involves providing services for children, the elderly or the infirmed.

21 people like this
Posted by Listen
a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2017 at 3:00 pm

Who said the absences were unplanned? All civilized organizations provide paid time off. If teachers choose to use it for protesting, that is their choice, and the standard PTO policy covers that option.

Who said protests have never had an impact?

Time to retake history.

I celebrate teachers, immigrants, and all people that soldier through both subtle and obvious -isms. sexism, racism, anti-immigrant..ism (ha-ha)

People wouldn't be protesting if things were hunky-dory. Listen to their concerns.

9 people like this
Posted by Yeay teachers
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 9, 2017 at 5:18 pm

The ignorance about the discrimination against women is disheartening.
Punish women who speak up! Keep them in second place! The world run by men is so marvelous, don't change a thing! We need more aggression, more wars, more violence, more guns, more fights in bars, more domestic violence's great!

Thank you Nayeli for telling us who you voted for.

5 people like this
Posted by resident
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Mar 9, 2017 at 7:09 pm

[Post removed.]

6 people like this
Posted by RW
a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2017 at 7:36 pm

For those who are "how dare they"ing, you know that one day with a substitute teacher will not harm your child. Don't hide behind "but the children". We know that you're just mad that people (women) are protesting 45.

Also, teachers get paid days off called personal need. They don't need to give a reason for their absence. So, they will be paid for their day of protest if they use their personal need day, whether you think they should get paid or not.

Like this comment
Posted by RW
a resident of another community
on Mar 9, 2017 at 7:38 pm

Edit to above-the time off without providing a reason is personal need or personal necessity-I never can remember which is which.

28 people like this
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Mar 9, 2017 at 8:44 pm

@ Yeay teachers:

I am not embarrassed about voting for Trump. He certainly wasn't one of my top choices. However, I felt that he was the better option compared with someone so immeasurably corrupt and dishonest as Hillary Clinton. Nearly half of all women voters in America agreed with me.

I do think that it is silly to insinuate that "aggression, wars, violence, gun violence, fights in bars, domestic violence, etc." are somehow caused by gender. That is a very strange generalization of an entire gender.

My husband is a good man. His goodness isn't any sort of lack of masculinity, testosterone or ambition. In fact, he is a very "manly" man (if that makes sense). He's a "good" man because he is honest, gentle, kind, compassionate and empathetic with others.

The people who attack Trump excessively and behind various movements like this are probably hurting their cause. This sort of thing can get tiresome quite quickly. Over the last eight years, Republicans have been able to win both houses of Congress, the White House and record numbers of gubernatorial offices and state legislatures.

Next year, there will be an important election for the U.S. Senate. There will be 33 seats up for grabs; however, only eight of them are held by incumbent Republicans. Many of the seats currently held by Democrats are in red states or battleground states that Trump won last year.

We'll know next November if all of these marches, protests and, yes, complaining is truly effective in states that have seats in the Senate up for grabs.

4 people like this
Posted by Andrew Vargha.
a resident of College Terrace
on Mar 9, 2017 at 8:44 pm

Andrew Vargha. is a registered user.

The people who want teachers to have a day docked from their pay for using a sick day aren't thinking clearly, that much is obvious. Seems like lots of people are proud that they don't think before they speak

6 people like this
Posted by What? A protest? Where?
a resident of Barron Park
on Mar 9, 2017 at 9:10 pm

[Post removed.]

13 people like this
Posted by Prolly best
a resident of Mountain View
on Mar 9, 2017 at 10:15 pm

[Post removed.]

23 people like this
Posted by Zsa zsa
a resident of Green Acres
on Mar 10, 2017 at 9:25 am

What an embarrassment it is to be female these days. From the disgusting fools dressed as genitalia, screeching about bloody sheets, to staying home to 'protest' what not a single one of these fools can articulate. Absolutely shameful behavior. Good riddance - a day without this type leading our children is a bonus. Yuck.

9 people like this
Posted by Getting interesting
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Mar 10, 2017 at 12:02 pm

In China, there are more holidays:

March 8, International Women's Day
June 1, International Children's Day
May 4, Young Adult (<25 year) Day.

When I move to US 30 years ago, I was told that these Holidays only exist in Communist Countries.

I was a little surprised to see March 8th International Women's Day is getting popular here. Hay, I love it because I am a woman, just have a little "funny" feeling to see this in US.

10 people like this
Posted by outsider
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 10, 2017 at 3:28 pm

Marc V. I think you are mixing up way too many issues into a stew. I think it is reasonable for any parent to want warning if 45 teachers are going to walk out and to question how and who will replace a days worth of instruction or have guranteed easier tests : ) They all left work for kids to accomplish without instruction. If a teacher is not there, in my book that means a beach day or triple feature with popcorn. I know if this happened in other districts, by the second period of the day, the school would be empty and there would be rejoicing! Only palo alto expects their kids to work when they are gone and bless them, they do. I hope the students get credit for being awesome. Maybe there needs to be a secret tip off so kids can get surfboards waxed and their fandango tickets.

2 people like this
Posted by Curmudgeon
a resident of Downtown North
on Mar 10, 2017 at 5:46 pm

Firsthand experience is far more educational than any classroom lesson can ever be.

17 people like this
Posted by George
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 11, 2017 at 8:44 am

Let's try 'Every Other Day Without Women'.

What idiots. We have to stop dividing people into groups and put an end to us vs. them. Inclusive means we look at people as people guided by the golden rule, not as labeled victims each requiring special accomodations. Abandoning their responsibilities to the kids to march around to show solidarity with each others feelings is a bit much. Bad example.

22 people like this
Posted by Martha
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 11, 2017 at 9:25 am

What exactly are the complaints these women have anyway? As a woman who has benefited enormously from strong, caring, intelligent men throughout my life, I don't support this so called "movement" at all. Starting with my father, brother, now wonderful husband of over 25 years, and countless men in the workplace who always treated me with respect, all the key men in my life have done nothing but be supportive and protective of me. I reject this protest day entirely as irresponsible, divisive and even hateful.

Like any human, I've encountered my fair share of both difficult men and women in the workplace, yet if you are minimally trained in the skills of handling difficult people then you just handle it and be strong. Many of my best life lessons in managing people and relationships were taught to me by the many wonderful and strong men in my life.

The main point is this: Men are our sacred partners in life and in making this a better world. Rather than play hooky irresponsibly, running around the streets looking hysterical and complaining about nothing, go volunteer somewhere on your own time to help a human in need. I can tell you there are plenty of fellow Americans who need your help today, it's very easy to find worthwhile volunteer causes. Please women, love your men, love all people, with real constructive actions, not counter productive protests.

1 person likes this
Posted by @FIO Sake
a resident of Barron Park
on Mar 11, 2017 at 6:00 pm

Dear Protest? What??? 


Your censored comment can be found on the page I dedicated to the ongoing censoring. I copy and then post comments before and after they are censored here (only a tiny sampling).

If you want to check the comments I post before and after they are censored, please check:

Web Link

(or search for: village fool palo alto before and after) .

All censorships exist to prevent anyone from challenging current conceptions and existing institutions. All progress is initiated by challenging current conceptions, and executed by supplanting existing institutions. Consequently, the first condition of progress is the removal of censorship.”  -- George Bernard Shaw

I hope you will see this post, it will vanish soon. 


\/ill/\ge Foool

5 people like this
Posted by Yeay teachers
a resident of Palo Alto High School
on Mar 13, 2017 at 2:57 am

To those who are ignorant about the reason for the pink hats (I guess you dont read the papers?) the inspiration came from a word play after Trump referred to where he grabbed women.
A synonym for his vulgarity is kitty, or cat. The hats have cat ears.
Anyone who thinks the hats look like female anatomy is seriously ignorant. Enjoy your grabbing, narcissistic, money-mad,president.

7 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Mar 13, 2017 at 9:23 am

So here it is folks! From the previous post it is quite evident that the protest was not a celebration of how far women have come since the time of the first suffragettes who wanted the vote for women but as we suspected all along, just another anti-Trump rally against a democratically elected president.

My grandmothers both told me stories of what it was like in their youth. How they had to wash and reuse rags for menstruation. How they had to learn domestic skills at school while the boys did science and any type of math higher than simple arithmetic. How they were prevented from doing any type of athletic or even swim (particularly on certain days of the month) for fear they might exert themselves. Yes women have come a long way since then. Instead of celebrating their successes, which I believe is what women's day had become until this year, it is now just an other excuse to blame the democracy that elected the president.

What a sad day for our future women.

3 people like this
Posted by Martha
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Mar 13, 2017 at 6:42 pm

Dear Jessica,

I read your comment above, and you asked the following: "Did the incidents of sexual harassment of students in years past bother you at all? Does gender-based violence and rape culture bother you at all?" Of course. Both women and men must be protected from either and thank goodness we live in a country of laws and have many laws on the books protecting people from these crimes.

Unfortunately we still have extremely uncivilized and objectionable people who write rap music with lyrics glorifying violence and rape which certainly contributes to both problems.

Here are just a few other things that "bother" me. These are deeply tragic every day occurrences in our society today: young men and women getting shot and killed in Chicago, innocent people who are killed by drunk drivers, people who die from heroin and other drug overdoses, 68,000 foster children in CA, to name a few other causes needing attention.

Would it help solve any of these gravely serious problems for all of us to take off work, wear pink hats and protest in the streets? No. What would help? Doing something constructive to help prevent these tragedies from continuing: volunteer at youth foster programs, donate to alcoholism/drug rehab programs, donate to inner city youth programs in Chicago, be a responsible person, etc.

We all already recognize sexual harassment and rape are serious problems and thankfully clear laws exist to prosecute the perpetrators. These are all serious problems. Yet if we all decided to leave work, inconvenience others and protest against every problem in our society, that does nothing to solve the problems. Peaceful protesting is sometimes needed and a right which must always be protected. However, we also ought to be careful how we spend our resources and time, and careful not to trivialize the very causes we care about.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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