SB7: Will Reform Change Lots Or Just A Little?


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While some rank and file teachers are angry and concerned about the new reform bill ( Ill. school reform could set standard Jacksonville Journal Courier), and some observers want to wait and see (.U46, D300 school districts, unions react to passage of ed reform bill Chicago Sun-Times), some reformers and editorial page writers are worried that the law is weak (Fix Chicago schools Chicago Sun-Times, Rahm's Education Promise WSJ): "The Illinois bill is far weaker than those recently passed in Ohio (which banned teacher strikes), Florida (which put all teachers on annual contracts, effectively ending tenure), and Indiana (which established a statewide voucher program and empowered parents to "trigger" transformations at failing schools)..." What do you think the real-world impact of the soon to be law on the operations and effectiveness most Chicago schools will be, if any?

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  • Has anybody seen the trailer bill for SB7? Was the language actually changed in SB7 after the CTU left the meeting?

  • From what I know CTU has suggested language for a trailer bill, but apparently there must be more meetings with Stand for Children on it. Politically one would assume Mayor Emanuel would want any trailer bill that might make it possible for the CTU to more easily strike delayed as long as possible in order to impose the longer school day/year with minimal costs, and possibly even revoke salary increases by declaring a fiscal emergency.

    My understanding of the issue of the language change is that there was no operating written draft of the sections in question when CTU left the meeting. It appears that there was an oral understanding of at least the 75% vote issue, the other issue seems very murky. All I can base this understanding on is several different articles and taped comments by the ISBE general counsel. Up to now and at the hearings in the House last week CTU produced no written drafts showing language changes that I know of.

    Rod Estvan

  • In reply to Rodestvan:

    Rod thanks!

  • Was on the mass CTU tele-meeting last night. Karen said she had to leave due having to undergo some kind of surgery. Not sure why a CTU attorney or other representative did not stay/take her place at the table.

  • Nothing wrong with Karen taking care of health concerns, but aren't there like 25,000 of us she could have called upon to take her place while she was out? Just doesn't make sense to leave such an important table unattended.

  • That's major news. Guess the wait on a budget might take even longer.

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