With guest, Louder Than a Bomb poet Nate Marshall

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Rahm pulls that old seat-at-the-table"gambit. It worked on SB7.

CTU prez says "no thanks" this time

The table is set. The menu, already decided. The guest list includes corporate reformers, charter school operators, private schoolers, some priests and an heiress. The agenda is a political one for the mayor. His PR guys tell him he has a winner in a longer school day and school year. They're probably right. They tell Rahm and CEO Brizard that they should negotiate it the press rather than in secret negotiations with the union.

The only hitch is he has to pay for it -- or does he? There's no way he's going to use his own slush fund (TIF) to pay teachers and staff for an hour and a half each day and two weeks more work each year. So he will use the media and political clout and savvy (offering to give back 2% of the 4% pay raise that was due teachers this year) to circumvent union contract negotiations -- the real venue for such discussions.

This is basically the same table and guest list that Stand For Children's Jonah Edelman described when he bragged about how he had snookered the CTU, IFT, and IEA into supporting anti-union legislation (SB7) in the past.

But this time the union said, no. They are already at a table. It's called collective bargaining.
CTU spokeswoman Stephanie Gadlin said in a statement union President Karen Lewis does not want to be part of a publicity stunt.
"CPS has loaded its advisory council with charter school proponents, parochial school leaders, administration-connected clergy, politicians and union-busting advocacy groups. This news has nothing to do with helping our children and everything to do with politicizing a really serious problem. Our children deserve better.” -- Chicagoist

Following up on the Save Our Schools March/Rally in D.C., SOS Chicago will hold it's first meeting, Saturday, Aug. 27th at 10 a.m. at Jane Addams Hull House, 800 S. Halsted. St. Hope to see you there.

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