News and Notes

Nov. 28: Giving Tuesday to raise funds for our students with housing insecurity

For Giving Tuesday today, the Student Special Assistance Fund (SSAF) is raising money to meet a 50 percent increase in the need for emergency aid for Students in Temporary Living Situations (STLS) experiencing housing insecurity. We’re hoping to provide students with eyeglasses, hearing aids, and winter jackets via Operation Warm. Help us reach our $10K goal! Read more and donate today.


Instituto del Progreso Latino strike authorization vote Friday

After more than a year of stalling at the bargaining table, Instituto del Progreso Latino’s management is still pushing union-busting measures, forcing CTU members to schedule a strike authorization vote for this Friday. Educators and staff at Instituto’s two charter high schools in Pilsen want a contract that will provide safe, sustainable and supportive schools, but management is pushing anti-union concessions instead. Stay tuned for more details.


Skyline Training pay resolution

Over June, July and August of 2023, hundreds of CTU members went above and beyond and participated in paid, in-person and virtual Skyline training sessions, only to be told to wait six to eight weeks to be compensated. More than eight weeks later, those members were still awaiting payment for their work and had received minimal information from Payroll when requesting updates. Once members began reporting the concern to CTU, we took immediate action by filing a grievance on behalf of all impacted members and discussing the issue at multiple Strategic Bargaining sessions. As a result, some members have since been compensated for their summer Skyline work and CPS Payroll has confirmed that over 150 additional members will be made whole on this Friday’s (12/1/2023) paycheck. If you completed paid Skyline training this past summer and are still awaiting payment, please review your 12/1/23 stub to ensure that it includes all outstanding pay for those Summer 2023 Skyline trainings. If, after reviewing your stub, you believe you are still missing pay for Summer 2023 Skyline trainings, please let us know by emailing CTU Field Rep, Jed Schenkier, at jaredschenkier@ctulocal1.org.


Contract Survey

The Union wants your input as we kick off our contract for next fall’s new agreement. Go to ctulocal1.org/survey to complete our Contract Survey and make sure your priorities are represented.


Features

Photo of Westinghouse College Prep science teacher Nina Hike.

Veteran teacher Nina Hike merges science and social justice in her classroom

Science teacher Nina Hike remembers teaching in the pre-Google days when she brought pets into the classroom to teach biology. That was in 1996, when she began her 28-year teaching career at Orr High School. Since then, Hike has worked to build a social justice science curriculum that engages CPS’ primarily Black and Brown students. Read more about Nina.


LSCs have the power to hold principals accountable, a critical tool for school improvement

The ability to evaluate school principals and decide whether to renew their contract is one of the most powerful tools that members of Local School Councils (LCSs) hold. A new principal evaluation form and CTU trainings can help your LSC use that power to its fullest potential. Read more.


Notices

Nov. 29: National Board Certification information session

Recruitment is underway for the 2024–2026 Nurturing Teacher Leadership National Board Certification cohort. CTUF will host a virtual information meeting on Nov. 29, 5 to 8:30 p.m. There is now an annual state stipend for NBCTs who remain in hard-to-staff schools for at least two years (in addition to our CPS annual, pensionable stipend, opportunity to move to Lane 5 on the Salary Scale, optional master’s degree, and paid leadership opportunities). For more information, contact LynnCherkasky-Davis@ctuf.org or register for the NTL information session here.


Notice of delegate nominations for PSRPs, clinicians, citywide teachers

On Dec. 4, a meeting for delegate nominations will be held for all Citywide Teacher, Clinician, and PSRP functional groups for the 2024-2026 delegate term, in accordance with the election procedures for that term. The meeting will be held from 5 to 6:30 p.m. at the CTU Center, 1901 West Carroll Ave. in Room 125. Read more.


Dec. 5: Healthcare Webinar

Questions about your healthcare benefits? Need help navigating the different plans? Plan to attend our healthcare webinar on Dec. 5, at 4:30 p.m., to get those questions answered. Register for the webinar today.


Dec. 7: Special education Know Your Rights Training

Questions about special ed in CPS? This training will focus on using our contract to enforce SPED policy and advocate for our students and their educators. Join us virtually Dec. 7, at 5 p.m. Register for the training.


Dec. 8 deadline: Check your sports stipend information!

Coaches, Athletic Directors and Sports Liaisons will split up millions of dollars in contractual stipends. Make sure you get your share! The final amount of each member’s stipend will be determined when we validate the list of coaches from last school year. So, go to ctulocal1.org/sports to make sure all your coaching, AD and liaison work is credited in our list. The deadline is Dec. 8 to let us know if we are missing your work, so check your listing now!


Understanding the migrant crisis: three part sanctuary series

The second meeting of the three-part Sanctuary Series will be Thursday, Nov.  30, with the program “Sanctuary for Whom? Protecting Black, Latinx, LGBTQ+ students and their families.” Get more information about the series at bit.ly/sanctuaryseries2023 and get more resources at ctulocal1.org/sanctuary.


Resources to help you support and meet the needs of newcomers to our city and CPS

We know CTU members have been on the front lines supporting our new neighbors being shipped here by right wing zealots. But you can’t do it alone — more is needed. We’ve assembled a page of resources to help you support your new students and their families. Visit CTUlocal1.org/sanctuary for more information and resources.


Scholarship opportunity for special education students

The Illinois Federation of Teachers, our state federation, provides a number of scholarship opportunities, including the Carl J. Megel Special Education Scholarship. Application deadline is March 1, 2024. Details and application forms are available from the IFT’s scholarships page.


Members Corner

A special thank you

This shout out goes out to Gervaise Clay for an outstanding job representing a Chicago Teachers Union member with professionalism, integrity, strength of the Chicago Teachers Union, and the power of the contract.   Thank you!

~ Diana Stanford


Celebrate your siblings

Do you know a CTU member who’s achieved a special milestone or accomplishment that you want to acknowledge? Have they made something cool you want to share with the union? Send your blurb (1 to 4 sentences) to communications@ctulocal1.org for consideration in an upcoming Members Corner.


Events


In the News

CTUF Quest Center

Examining Bias
Screencastify

Exploring the World
Understanding the Illinois Culturally Responsive Teaching and Leading Standards

For more CTU news and updates, please visit our website at www.ctulocal1.org, and follow us on Facebook (including our members only Facebook group), Instagram and Twitter.