"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Chicago Teachers Fight for Our Lives

As New Orleans is once again under water, as the Republican lie machine works overtime in Tampa, and real journalism or reporting is MIA in the corporate media owned airwaves, a social studies teacher is using email to spread the word about what's happening in Chicago and to teachers and public education all across the country. 

"Friends and Family across the United States-

As most of you know Chicago Teachers Union has been in a fight to win a contract that requests not only fair compensation, but also great teaching and learning conditions in the face of mass privatization and charterization.  Our mayor has promised 250 more charter schools in place of traditional public schools.  Our mayor has promised more testing for our kids, and rating teachers based on those tests.  Our mayor has promised merit pay, and a longer day.  This is also a mayor who has seen a 70% increase in the murder rate in Chicago in only one years' time, and an increase in public dollars to private corporations.

We are fighting for experienced teachers over expendable ones; fair pay for longer days; for the arts, P.E., foreign languages, and vocational studies.  We are fighting for social services in our schools.  We are fighting for dignity in the workplace and classroom, and the whole world is watching.  A strike is looming, and the Board has yet to come to the table with respect for our members and the teaching and learning process.

I spent my summer traveling the US from east coat to west coast spreading the message of what we are trying to do, and listening to the similar concerns of educators everywhere.  BOTH major teachers unions recognized that this is a fight in which everyone must throw in their hat, and passed support resolutions encouraging their locals to follow suit.  I have attached a sample resolution, and ask that if you can, to pass one among your congregations, whether that body be composed of teachers, parents, faculty, nurses, school board members, principals, doctors, steel-workers, coal-miners, and anyone in between.  Everyone has a civic stake in public education.  We need your voice on this. 

I ask you to watch and share this video detailing the what we are fighting for.  
I implore you to send us letters of support. 
I invite you to donate to the CTU Solidarity Fund. 

I entreat you to join the nationwide fight for better public schools."

Thank you,
Adam Heenan
High School Social Studies

*Follow updates on Twitter; #FairContractNow

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