Monday, September 10, 2012
We Are Chicago Teachers Now!
After a quarter century, it was finally scheduled to begin at midnight, and it did with a handful of pickets in front of the headquarters of the nation's third largest school district four blocks south of Chicago's City Hall. It is the first strike by the Chicago Teachers Union in a quarter century. And despite all of the spin marshaled on behalf of the rulers of the nation's third largest city, the burden now rests with Chicago's mayor and his appointed school board to explain why it came to a strike. At midnight, the first picket lines were to begin at the school system's central and other administrative offices. At dawn, the picket lines would be spread across more than 600 schools in the America's third largest city. By 6:30 a.m., according to the union, more than 20,000 teachers and other school workers, joined by thousands of parents and students, will be picketing at more than 600 public schools. . . .
After weeks of negotiations, Mayor Rahm Emanuel's team and the Chicago Teacher's Union failed to agree on a contract. On Sunday night, CTU officially announced it was going to strike for the first time in a quarter century. So on Monday, instead of teaching, the union's 26,000 educators will protest.
Chicago Teachers Union statement
Network of Teacher Activist Groups
Chicago has been the focus of corporate school “reform,” but Chicago is now the epicenter of the push back against it.…After 17 years of the tyranny of high stakes tests, business-like management of public schools, school closings and turnarounds by private operators, disinvestment of resources from neighborhood public schools, and moves to pay teachers based on competitive performance measures, teachers have had enough. A new revitalized teachers union, along with parents, students and community members of Chicago are standing up to the assault on public education.
Chicago Teachers Union
“For far too long our students have been short-changed, their teachers have been undermined and their schools have been financially starved of the resources they need,” said Lewis. “Today we release our vision of what a CPS education should look like for every student, not just those from higher income brackets. We need fresh and innovative ideas, not the same status quo and failed …”