We, teachers, and other educational personnel in the Chicago Public Schools, being members of the Chicago Teachers Union, do hereby declare this Union to have the following purposes:
to protect and improve the services of the public schools as a social agency for developing the capacities of the young and promoting adult education;
to promote and guarantee efficient and faithful service from us to the public and to insure to us in return for that service a fair reward and a just security;
in accordance with the Agreement between the Board of Education of the City of Chicago and Chicago Teachers Union, to assert, secure, and protect the inherent and fundamental equity in our jobs;
as the sole collective bargaining agent for members of the bargaining unit, to establish and maintain orderly and practicable democratic processes in the management of the Chicago public schools, in accordance with the terms of the Agreement;
to maintain a relationship of mutual assistance and cooperation with organized labor;
to unify the educators of traditional public schools and public charter schools in the City of Chicago, together with other Chicago-area educators that may join with this Union.
to promote racial, economic and social justice in order to achieve educational justice and build community and labor coalitions to achieve that objective.
Jesse served as CTU vice president from 2010 until 2018, during which time he played a key role in two rounds of contract negotiations, the merger between the CTU and the Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff and the Union’s historic 2012 strike. He was on the front lines of fight against school closings in 2013 and the ongoing campaign for revenue for the school’s Chicago’s students deserve. Prior to being elected to CTU leadership in 2010, Jesse taught social studies in Chicago Public Schools for 12 years at Senn High School and Chicago Vocational Career Academy, where he also coached chess, served as union delegate and worked with community and activist groups such as the Kenwood Oakland Community Organization and the Campaign to End the Death Penalty. In 2004, he played a leading role in the Save Senn campaign that mobilized hundreds of parents to oppose the takeover of the school by a military academy, an experience that taught him the value of defending traditional public schools against privatization.
Jesse represents the CTU on the American Federation of Teachers’ (AFT) Executive Council, and sits on the AFT Executive Board. He earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Brown University where he studied history and education, and currently lives with his wife and two children in Chicago’s Rogers Park neighborhood.
Stacy Davis Gates
Prior to her current role at the CTU, she served as the union’s Political and Legislative Director. This past fall, she helped to lead a 15-day strike and to negotiate an historic contract that provides for smaller class sizes, ensures a nurse and social worker in every Chicago public school, secures sanctuary protections for immigrant families, and supports students and families experiencing homelessness.
While at the CTU, Ms. Davis Gates has been the architect of bold political and legislative campaigns for the schools and city that all Chicagoans deserve. She has raised millions of dollars to elect classroom teachers to all levels of local government and to challenge school privatizers and union-busters. Ms. Davis Gates has also spearheaded statewide legislative campaigns to pass the strongest charter school accountability measures in the country, push for the restoration of the bargaining rights of Chicago Public Schools employees, and fully fund public education by ending tax loopholes for the 1%.
In 2017, Ms. Davis Gates was elected Chair of United Working Families, an independent political organization by and for working-class people and our movements. She also serves as a board member for the Action Center on Race & the Economy (ACRE), a nexus for organizations working at the intersection of the struggle for racial justice and Wall Street accountability.
Ms. Davis Gates is currently on leave from the classroom, where she taught high school social studies for over a decade at Englewood, Clemente, and Mason Community Links High Schools. She attended Saint Mary’s College, the University of Notre Dame, and Concordia University. Ms. Davis Gates lives on the South Side of Chicago with her husband and three children.
Christel Williams-Hayes is a 25-year veteran of Chicago Public Schools, serving as a PSRP delegate, district supervisor, functional vice president and American Federation of Teachers-Illinois Federation of Teachers (AFT-IFT) convention delegate in that time. Christel was a Chicago Teachers Union organizer during the 2012 strike, as well as the three-day march in 2013 and CTU Summer Organizing Institute prior to becoming a Union field representative in 2017. She is an IFT executive board vice president, member of the IFT Scholarship Committee and has served as co-chair of the IFT PSRP Constituency Committee and organizer of its bi-annual PSRP Constituency Conference. At the national level, Christel has worked on the PSRP Professional Problems Committee for the American Federation of Teachers and was a member of its Summer Organizing Institute in Houston, Texas.
A native of Chicago’s West Side, Christel was raised by a single mother who retired as a school clerk. She graduated from John Marshall High School and proudly serves on the school’s alumni committee. Christel, her husband and her three daughters are all graduates of CPS, with her middle daughter starring for a Marshall Lady Commandos state championship team under legendary coach Dorothy Gaters.
Maria T. Moreno