Legislative update to rank and file CTU members, Saturday, April 2, 2022:

On Friday, we shared the news about the COVID sick days bill. With just one more week in the legislative session, both houses are ramping up their work, and two more of our bills passed the General Assembly Friday. They now go to the Governor for signature.

SB 3986, the “Too Young to Test bill”, just passed the House and is now heading to the Governor. The legislation prevents ISBE from doing standardized tests for pre-K students through 2nd graders, a proposal that enriches testing companies while robbing our littlest learners of critical educational and developmental time.

Education deformers like Advance Illinois opposed the bill, and the CTU worked in coalition with Illinois Families for Public Schools and the IFT to get this passed. Huge props to Dr. Monique Redeaux-Smith, a middle school teacher and CTU leader who now serves as the Education Issues Director at IFT, for her leadership in passing this important bill.

We also passed SB 4000, part of our effort to address the severe guest teacher shortage plaguing CPS. The bill allows retirees to teach in our school communities for an additional 20 days without impacting their pensions, for a total of 140 days of guest teaching.

We’ve won some real and important victories this session, because we’ve stood our ground and continued to organize and advocate throughout the legislative process, as slow and frustrating as that can be. Thank you to all who reached out to their elected officials and encouraged them to support our bills. Our legislative victories are built on the power of our solidarity, and that solidarity allows us to continue to move the needle toward the equity and respect we deserve in our school communities.

In solidarity,

Kurt Hilgendorf
CTU Legislative and Policy Director