Chicago is an outlier in Illinois as a major district whose school board is not directly elected by the people whose welfare it is meant to serve. HB 2267, which has passed the House and currently awaits recognition and vote in the Senate, would fix that situation and finally bring an important measure of democracy to Chicago Public Schools.
The Illinois General Assembly has started its spring legislative session, and CTU is there advocating for what our schools need. Our goal is to build on our recent victories and to pass legislation that makes concrete improvements in school governance and oversight and that allows us to be more effective in our work.
If, by the mayor’s standards, current elected school board proposals are illegitimate to govern our school communities, consider how much decades of mayoral control has met, or exceeded, that illegitimacy.
These procedures for the fund to benefit educators who suffered financial hardship due to retaliation for exercising their right to work safely and remotely were approved by the House of Delegates at its March 3, 2021 meeting.
The Union and our rank-and-file members have initiated a multi-pronged strategy to push back on discipline cases against members in retaliation for their activism around its efforts to force educators back into school buildings. It is already having an effect. As of today, CPS has dropped an additional 21 of the 55 cases, leaving 34 outstanding.
Asian Human Services, the owner of Passages Charter School, has abruptly broken off negotiations but members remain united. Aspira members have reached a tentative agreement over the move of ASPIRA Early College High School into the ASPIRA Haugan Middle School building. CTU members at Instituto Justice Leadership Academy are raising objections about the school’s disturbing lack of cleanliness. Educators at Latino Youth High School continue to stand strong in their 28th week of refusing the boss’ return to in-person work order. And we are close to a tentative reopening agreement with Namaste.
For the end of the three year delegate term this January, the CTU held nomination meetings for delegate positions in citywide representative units. This included PSRP and clinician positions for both district and charter schools. The number of members nominated for each representative unit did not exceed the number of positions. So, none of the nominations were contested and elections were not necessary. The names of these new delegates are listed below for each representative unit.
CTU has filed a grievance over the CPS directive to principals that they cannot permit educators to work remotely even if they have no in-person students, unless they have applied for an accommodation. It is a clear violation of our Memorandum of Agreement on Resuming In-Person Instruction.
Congrats to all the new LSC members! Thanks to all for stepping up and working with parents and community leaders to ensure that our schools are empowered to effectively govern and fight for the schools our students deserve. We have a lot of work ahead of us, and CTU is here to help you every step of the way!
Under the recently ratified Framework for Resumption of In-Person Instruction, three types of accommodations are offered to members who qualify and an unpaid, job-protected leave is offered to any member concerned about returning to in-person instruction under the conditions of the agreement. See details here.
A brave few stepped forward and inspired us all throughout this fight. CPS agreed to reinstate all locked out members and drop discipline against them. The mayor and CPS refused to pay the wages they owe PSRPs and teachers who stood up for safety. We’re supporting them and fighting to get what they deserve.
We’ve received numerous reports of members being told by their principals that they cannot work remotely even if they have no in-person students. This is not correct, except under certain circumstances – and members need to demand that their rights to remote work under the Memorandum of Agreement be honored.
Poet and King College Prep Teacher Erik Young wrote this piece to honor the strength and courage of CTU President Emerita Karen Lewis.
Ballots have now gone out to every working email address in our database belonging to an active member at a district school.
Members have posed a number of questions repeatedly in meetings about the new reopening agreement. This FAQ is an effort to answer some of the most common questions and points of confusion. Check back often; we are adding content all the time!
She bowed to no one, and gave strength to tens of thousands of Chicago Teachers Union educators who followed her lead, and who live by her principles to this day.
Late last night we received a tentative framework from Chicago Public Schools for the resumption of in-person learning.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot has walked away from the bargaining table again after instructing her CPS leadership team to submit a “last, best and final offer” to the Union at 11:15 p.m. on Thursday night. CPS could do so much better, but refuses. Stay strong. Stay united. Raise your fighting voices even louder. Watch for updates .
Congressman Jesús “Chuy” García wrote to President Biden and Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona about the need for resources and cooperation in reopening schools, echoing the concerns that the Chicago Teachers Union has raised about Mayor Ligghtfoot’s reopening plan. On the same day, 23 state legislators from the Chicago area wrote to the mayor, the Board of Education and CPS leadership urging cooperation, caution and resources in reopening schools.