News and Notes

New cooperative spirit on display as CTU President Stacy Davis Gates joins Mayor Johnson and CEO Martinez in celebrating first week of school

As CPS students returned to their classrooms last week, CTU launched a weeklong back-to-school tour with President Stacy Davis Gates highlighting the transformational path forward for our schools this year under Mayor Brandon Johnson’s administration. The opening day highlighted Sustainable Community Schools Beidler and Brighton Park, as well as Kenwood HS—where the mayor said he hoped “to embarrass my son,” who attends the school. On Wednesday, George Washington HS highlighted our cooperative efforts to meet the challenges of the climate crisis highlighted by the scorching temperatures. President Davis Gates addressed these and other issues at the Board of Education meeting on Thursday, as well.

CTU educators at ChiArts Charter set to strike

ChiArts’ founder José Ochoa, management and foundation stand in the way of an equitable agreement to provide safe, supportive and well-resourced classrooms. So CTU members at ChiArts will announce a strike date Wednesday evening. Read all the details on the CTU website.

Extreme heat highlights the climate crisis

The temperatures have come down this week, but, thanks to climate change, we can expect more extreme weather events in the future. That’s why our union is pushing for green, sustainable schools to be part of CPS’ master facilities plan this year. Read our updates from last Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

It’s been a busy first 100 days for Mayor Brandon Johnson

Video still of Mayor Brandon Johnson celebrating the accomplishments of his administration's first 100 days.

100 days of service. 100 days of community building. 100 days of working to create fair wages, expanding mental health resources, providing assistance to seniors and disabled communities, bringing relief to victims of climate change, addressing the crisis of the unhoused, and reshaping the CPS Board of Education. Not bad for the first 100 days of the Johnson administration.

Sept. 29 CTU PAC annual dinner

It has never been more important to celebrate our political power! Our annual Legislators and Educators Appreciation Dinner — LEAD — provides rank-and-file members an opportunity to engage elected officials in an evening of celebration and coalition-building for legislative initiatives in Chicago, Springfield and nationwide. Sept. 29, 4:30 p.m. social hour, 5:30 p.m. dinner at the CTU Center. Tickets are on sale now, get yours today!

Aug. 30: ISBE endorsements info session

Building Collective Care

Vivian Harsh lecture on Building Collective Care: Black Women Labor Organizers’ Production of Care Spaces in the Postwar Black Belt

Sept. 2: Join us at the annual Labor Day Parade

Join the CTU float at the annual Labor Day Parade, Sept. 2. We will gather at 11a.m. on S. Cottage Grove Ave. between E. 108th St. and E. 103rd St. Following the parade, join your union siblings at
, in Pullman (George) Park and Arcade Park from 1 – 6 p.m. Featuring live music, food and drink vendors, merchant and art vendors and a Kids Zone, the festival honors labor heroes like Ed Sadlowski. RSVP to join us at the parade.

Sept. 1–4: Socialism 2023 conference

Several CTU members will be speaking at the Socialism 2023 Conference. The weekend’s topics will include organizing fighting unions, taking on climate change, and the struggle against transphobia. Learn more.

Apply by Sept. 5:
Become a CTU Teacher Leader Policy Fellow

Are you interested in how school policy is made and imposed on schools? Would you like to investigate how the process of establishing education policy could work differently? Would you like to get more involved in CTU through policy advocacy? If so, the CTU Policy Fellowship is for you. Learn more & apply by Sept. 5.

Sept. 6 & 14: Your class size questions answered

Have too many students in a class? Not sure what to do or whether you can get relief? Find out what the Joint Class Size Committee can do to relieve crowded classrooms. Drop in from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 6 at the CTU Center or join class size specialists on Zoom from 4:00 to 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 14. Drop ins are welcome at both our in-person and online sessions and you can read more details about class size relief on our website’s class size information page.

Mexican Independence Day Parade

Join the CTU contingent in the 26th Street Mexican Independence Day Parade on Saturday, September 16. We will meet at 10:00 a.m. and the parade steps off at 12:00 noon. Wear your CTU red and show up with orgullo mexicano! RSVP to join us in the parade at

Back-to-schools healthy schools raffle

Do you have colleagues who are new to CPS? Get them two mentors!

The We Care mentoring program provides members in their first three years in CPS with both a Virtual Instructional Coach for teaching skills and a Building Mentor for learning how to handle the work expectations of CPS and their school community. The union-run program is a joint project of ISBE, CPS, the CTU and our state federation, the IFT. Nurture success in your school! Help your colleague submit their information at

Solidarity actions you can take TODAY

Info for delegates, executive board members and district organizers

Rank-and-file democracy is the trademark of our union, and CTU’s delegates, executive board members and district organizers are vital to ensuring it. Regular meetings of those groups are crucial to the successful functioning of the union. Please make a note of the calendar for the year, so you don’t miss a meeting of the body you serve on. View the CTU meetings calendar for the 2023 – 2024 school year.

CTU committees are the lifeblood of our union, learn more

CTU committees are a great way for rank-and-file members to engage with our union’s policy deliberations, celebrate our unity and serve your colleagues. You don’t need to be elected to serve on a committee, just fill out the application. Learn more, and join a committee today.

Say NO to arts cuts and schedule changes at ChiArts

ChiArts parents are opposed to ChiArts’ proposal to cut back on arts instruction at the school and ram through major changes to the students’ school day. Sign their petition to ChiArts officials to help them fight back. Sign the petition.

Donations for displaced migrants needed

In the News

CTUF Quest Center

The Chicago Teachers Union Foundation Quest Center welcomes you back to school with a special discount offer to begin the 2023/24 school year!

Save $50 off CTUF Quest Center courses that cost $150.00 or more using promo code SAVE50! at checkout. Check out the full CTUF Quest Catalog.

The offer ends on
. One promo code per user. Valid only with CTUF Quest Center courses. This coupon code does not apply to Teacher’s Teacher, ChiME, or Schlechty Center classes.

Motivation MattersArt of Questioning and Discussion

Spanish CommunicationSetting the Stage

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