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Buffalo school teacher continues activism through rap videos

Photo from Jeff Grossi's Facebook page

A Buffalo Public School teacher is out with another hip-hop, rap video that blasts New York State for too many standardized tests, Common Core and state receivership. WBFO's Focus on Education Reporter Eileen Buckley has more on this latest education activism video.

"I say who's schools, our schools, who decide, we decide, and that's a direct reflection of receivership because receivership is coming in and trying to take over our schools," stated Jeff Grossi referring to the lyrics of his rap video.  Grossi is a math teacher at the former Bennett High School now the Middle Early College High School.

Grossi calls himself an 'education crime fighter.'  His hip-hop name is MC Zill and he appears once again with his fiancé Katie Ann Bernard. They're out with a new video called 'Still Teaching' and called it the 'fight to revolutionize public education.' 

"Not only the developmentally, inappropriate Common Core standards that are still being taught and that are still being tested, multiple times a year. It is still causing burdens on students and parents and teachers and community members too because it effects everyone in this community," said Grossi.

Grossi tells WBFO News he's fed up with what he calls the 'dismantling of public education.'

"Being belittle by the Common Core initiatives, by New York State Governor Cuomo and by policy and procedures that are against public education and that are attacking public education," replied Grossi.

Grossi protested at a rally last week before the Buffalo School Board meeting, where he appeared with other protestors on the steps of City Hall. 

The school board has issued letters to city school teachers directly outlining what's in the latest contract offer -- claiming teachers might not have been notified by the union leader.  But Grossi tells WBFO News he never received the letter.

"Me personally, I haven't. Some teachers haven't," said Grossi. 

Grossi noted that he is well-informed by the Buffalo Teachers Federation.  "I am totally aware of what's going on and that's an absolute lie. My union has been very clear on the quote, unquote contract offer -- if that's what you want to call it -- made to us," said Grossi.  "We do know what's going on. I don't think they're the ones that know what's going on."

Teachers are being asked to increase their school day and school year. Grossi said he has no problem with a longer day and school year, but wants to be compensated for the work.