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CTU, parents, students and local unions take over City Hall to protest furloughs, continue call for Claypool resignation

CHICAGO—Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) rank-and-file members fill City Hall today at 10 a.m. in protest of furlough days mandated by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) CEO Forrest Claypool. Educators will be joined by CPS parents and students who are furious with the mayor and his CPS CEO for attacking a workforce that is 80 percent women for four days of lost pay and professional development (PD) time for grading, preparing dynamic curriculum and giving students feedback—adding to teachers’ already-excessive workloads caused by years of successive budget cuts.                               

This morning’s action comes two days after the CTU House of Delegates passed a resolution calling for Claypool’s immediate resignation for his efforts to dismantle and sabotage CPS, and another resolution stating that on Monday, Feb. 6, teachers will not be able to carry out electronic gradebook entry, lesson plan and unit plan submission as frequently as in the past due to the loss of paid preparation time.

“Forrest, with his gross negligence and mismanagement, has been a nightmare for our members,” said CTU President Karen Lewis. “The fact that his only option for balancing the budget was to furlough tens of thousands of hardworking educators on four of their contractually obligated PD days is not only dishonest, but shows that he knows nothing about leading a classroom—nor does he care.”

WHO:

 

CTU officers and rank-and-file members, CPS parents and students, members of SEIU Healthcare and the Amalgamated Transit Union locals 241 and 308.

WHAT:

 

Fight Back Friday teach-in to stop the furloughs, and restore education funding and professional development

WHEN:

 

Friday, Feb. 3 at 10 a.m.

WHERE:

 

City Hall, 121 N. LaSalle, Chicago

WHY:

 

CTU members asked Mayor Emanuel’s handpicked Board of Education to restore professional development days for the opportunity to prepare lesson plans and learn how to better protect students from imminent attacks on immigrant families, Muslims, racial minorities, LGBTQI students and women, but it flatly refused. In response, the CTU will lead a series of professional development teach-ins throughout City Hall to highlight the funding and gender disparities threatening Chicago’s public schools.

Chicago Teachers Union