The Little Rock Educators Association held its “Rendezvous with Rochambeau” motor march today, the National Day of Action for Public Education, protesting Governor Hutchinson’s demand that teachers and students return to classroom education on Aug. 24 despite the high rate of COVID-19 cases across the state. Taking a line from “Hamilton” (“The code word is Rochambeau, dig me? [Rochambeau!] You have your orders now, go, man, go!”), the Rendezvous organizers kicked off a caravan at 1 p.m. in North Little Rock by the Dickey-Stephens Ball Park and carried on to the state Capitol, where Times photographer Brian Chilson caught the action.
Teachers planned to plant tombstones (such as “RIP / A Teacher / 1951-2020) on the grounds of the Arkansas Education Association across from the Capitol but, Chilson said, police stopped them by block the entrance with their cars. (So you can bring firearms on the grounds to protect the Confederate monument and taunt Black Lives Matter activists, but teachers can’t put up cardboard tombstones? Go figure.) The caravan kept on circling, nevertheless.
There’s another event tonight: At 6 p.m., teachers will stage a “Die-In Demonstration” at Brady Elementary, sponsored by Grassroots Arkansas. Unless Johnny Key sends in the troops.