Join MORE in Solidarity with Chicago teachers, Aug. 23

August 9, 2012 — 1 Comment

Chicago teachers authorize strike! Come build solidarity & learn about the struggle

A discussion featuring a presentation by a Chicago Teachers Union member
Thursday, August 23rd
6:30 p.m. 
at The Murphy Institute
25 West 43rd Street, between 5th and 6th avenues
18th Floor, Room C/D

Public schools, teachers and their unions are under attack throughout the country.  The drive to privatize our public schools and strip away teacher protections is only accelerating.   In Chicago, Mayor Rahm Emanuel canceled a promised 4% pay raise to Chicago teachers and proposed lengthening the school day by 20% with only a 2% raise.  In addition, Emanuel proposes implementing a merit pay system for teachers–a similar system in Baltimore has led to 60% of teachers receiving unsatisfactory ratings.  In response, the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) has refused to back down and has shown the power of solidarity, holding large rallies and forging alliances with community members.  The CTU is demanding smaller class sizes, fair pay and a diverse and fulfilling curriculum for Chicago students.  This spring, 90% of all CTU members voted to authorize a strike.  98% of those voting authorized a strike.

The CTU’s campaign has met with some initial success.  Emanuel recently agreed to hire almost 500 teachers, mostly arts, PE and enrichment teachers.  These teachers will be hired from a pool of laid-off, experienced teachers.  The result is that a longer school day will not force teachers to work longer and harder with no compensation.
While this victory is inspiring, the CTU’s strike preparations continue, as there has been no agreement on teacher pay, class sizes, merit pay and other important issues.  It is urgent that teachers, parents and community members show our solidarity with CTU.  We also have a lot to learn from CTU’s struggle.
Come hear a presentation by a CTU member and help organize solidarity for the Chicago teachers here in NYC!

Stand with CTU! 

Sponsored by (list in formation):  Movement of Rank and File Educators, Black New Yorkers for Educational Excellence, Coalition for Public Education, Grassroots Education Movement (GEM), Labor Notes, New York Collective of Radical Educators (NYCoRE), New York City Labor Against the War, OWS Labor Outreach Committee

Contact [email protected] to help organize the event or to co-sponsor
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One response to Join MORE in Solidarity with Chicago teachers, Aug. 23


    It is critically important that professional educators frame the conversation, instead of merely responding to the latest outrage of school districts that are unified in dismembering whatever remains of public education.

    With the Internet platform for communication, we can coordinate with each other in Chicago, NYC, L.A. and elsewhere to set the agenda, which would go a long way toward dealing with the demoralized teacher corp that has been intimidated into saying nothing, if they don’t want to join the 300,000 teachers who have already been removed over the last few years as teachers.

    The ability to create a virtual commons on the Internet will allow teachers all over the country to finally take cognizance of their majority status in what has up until now been a corporate inspired monologue touting the joys…and profit in privatizing public education.

    I put out a blog call, where I deal with the same reality Brian Jones is dealing with in NYC. It occurs to me that Brian’s description of NYC Public Schools is equally apt for Chicago, L.A., and the vast majority of public school that are now significantly more segregated than they were pre-Brown vs. Board of Ed.

    I sit on the local station board of Pacifica Foundation station KPFK, which has four other stations that could serve as a foundation for building a national awareness of what is presently blacked out in the mainstream and public media- bought off by Broad and Gates Foundation privatizers.

    Between the network I have established around the country and the respective networks you can bring in, we might just be able to do something that those purposefully destroying public education cannot continue to ignore with impunity.

    Get in touch if you would like to be a part of acting, instead of merely reacting and preaching to a rapidly diminishing choir. If this doesn’t interest you, please feel free to share my contact with anybody who thinks that you cannot have a democracy without a dynamic public education system.

    Lenny Isenberg
    Skype: LennyIsenberg
    cell: 323.383.7805

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