Not counting the Index, the Chicago Teacher's Union contract is 230 pages long. It already has more holes in it than Swiss cheese, and the CTU President cannot even take a stand.
Teachers upset enough to ask for strike vote, union chief says
BY ROSALIND ROSSI Education Reporter email@example.com August 12, 2011 8:54PM
The president of the Chicago Teachers Union said Friday on a radio show that there is a “very high” likelihood that teachers will ask her to take a strike vote, given how angry and disrespected they feel.
But clarifying later to the Chicago Sun-Times, Karen Lewis said she did not predict that teachers will ultimately go on strike, only that the probability is high that members will call for a strike vote.
“People are very upset. People feel disrespected,’’ Lewis told WLS- AM Radio’s Connected to Chicago, which airs at 6 a.m. Sunday.
“We have teachers who have been extremely vilified for political purposes,’’
Faced with a tougher new bar for approving a strike, Lewis said she would only call for a strike vote if teachers came to her and requested it. But, given the disrespect and “loss of dignity” teachers feel, Lewis said, the likelihood of teachers wanting a strike vote is “very high.’’
Among other things, CTU members are angry about more than 1,500 teacher layoffs and a growing “do not hire” list that CPS developed in “secret,’’ Lewis told the Sun-Times.
The CTU and other unions that work in schools are currently discussing CPS’s decision to rescind promised (it should say contractual) raises. A breakdown in those talks could open the door for the first teachers strike since 1987.
However, under a new law, 75 percent of eligible CTU voters would have to approve that vote — up from a previous simple majority of all those who voted.
Teachers Union President Goes Back on Strike Threat
Karen Lewis Says She Didn't Mean What She Said
4:30 p.m. CDT, August 13, 2011
CHICAGO—The Chicago Teachers Union President is doing damage control today after threatening a strike.
Karen Lewis reportedly said the possibility of a teachers strike was "very high" this year.
She made the comments during a taping of the WLS-AM radio show Connected to Chicago.
The interview doesn't air until tomorrow, but Lewis was already doing an about-face at today's Bud Billiken Parade.
"That is not what that was about at all," said Lewis. "What I would like to do is focus on what our real issues are, which is finding funding to close these crazy budget gaps."
The district's last teachers strike was in 1987.
Sweeping education reforms signed by Governor Quinn in June, however, make it tougher for teachers to strike.
She does have one thing right. All of this is being done for political purposes and the losers are not going to be the politicians or those at the top. As usual, those who are the backbone of the schools will take the brunt once again.