Another Day, Another CTU Lawsuit

Another Day, Another CTU Lawsuit

Another day, another lawsuit.  This one focuses on the 10 schools where the hearing officer differed with the Board's decision (or vice versa).  Karen Lewis says she doesn't know how many CTU teachers will be laid off, according to a story in In These Times.  Meantime, there's a Mark Brown tirade against UNO's Juan Rangel, and some changes in the SEHS process, via CPSObsessed, and ... anything else?

LAWSUIT

Teachers union files suit to halt closings Tribune: The Chicago Teachers Union filed a lawsuit Wednesday that seeks to keep 10 schools from being shuttered, the third such action aimed at reversing the Board of Education's approval last week of closing 49 elementary schools and a high school program.

CTU, parents file lawsuit against school closures WBEZ: That’s because for those ten grammar schools—Buckingham, Calhoun North, Delano, King, Mayo, Morgan, Overton, Stewart, Stockton, and Williams—former judges ruled that CPS was not complying with its own guidelines for shutting down schools.

Teachers Union Files New Lawsuit To Stop School Closings CBS2 Chicago: The Chicago Teachers Union has filed a new lawsuit in its fight against plans to close 49 elementary schools. The suit, filed in Cook County Circuit Court, argued the Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Board of Education should have ...

CTU, Parents File New Lawsuit Against School Closures NBC Chicago (blog): Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public School CEO Barbara Byrd Bennett sit down with Mary Ann Ahern and discuss Wednesday's school closings and CPS plans to incorporate students into their new receiving schools. Rahm, Byrd-Bennett Discuss CPS ...
WHAT'S NEXT? WHAT'S NEW?
What’s Next for the Chicago Teachers Union? In These Times: Asked how many teachers will keep their jobs, Lewis said that, “We will not know until they decide what they’re going to do with registering the children” from the closing schools. That registration is slated to begin at the start of June.
Can Chicago’s Troubled Neighborhoods Be Saved? Chicago Magazine: “It’s a slow death once you take the schools out of these communities,” Brad Hunt, an urban historian and co-author of the recent book “Planning Chicago,” told me. “No one is talking shrinkage, even though that’s what we’re doing. In Chicago, that’s not the image we have of our city.”
Q & A with OAE (Katy Ellis from the Office of Access and Enrollment) cpsobsessed: Starting this Fall, students can take the SEHS placement test in October or November so they know their final score BEFORE ranking their schools on the application.  This will affect kids in 7th grade now who will be in 8th grade next year, applying to SEHS.  If you don’t sign up for an Oct or Nov test spot, you’ll test in Jan and will get you scores on the usual timeline.
CHARTERS
Brown: UNO’s Juan Rangel takes ‘full responsibility’ but not full penalty Sun Times: It’s just a little hard for me to see how they can pretend everything is fixed by instituting a bunch of structural changes and picking new directors while leaving in charge the guy who has been the driving force in the entire operation.
MISC
State lawmakers approve anti-truancy task force Chicago Tribune: Quinn, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett have said they will support the reform panel. The task force was proposed in response to a Chicago Tribune investigation in November that gained access to the ...
Trustees OK sex-change surgery for UIC student health plan Tribune: University of Illinois trustees Wednesday approved a student health insurance plan for the Chicago campus that for the first time covers gender reassignment surgery, a move that about three dozen other colleges have made in recent years.
Agnes Augustine, teacher who trained huskies for sled dog races, dies at 92 Sun Times: A lover of all dogs, but especially huskies, Agnes Burton Augustine became a “musher” who raised the canines, fed them special chicken diets (Wednesday was carrot day) and trained them for victory in contests such as the Klondike Classic in Wisconsin.

Chicago school absenteeism update Tribune: While analyzing data for a series on elementary school absenteeism, Tribune reporters also hit the streets, talking to young students at community centers, in schools and around kitchen tables. Across the state, they found families racked by intense poverty and children whose reasons for missing school went beyond the stereotypes. Here are updates on three young people profiled in the series.

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  • The number of high-poverty schools increases by about 60 percent http://ow.ly/lxCbQ @hechingerreport

  • Charter Principal: Demand for School is 'Big' in McKinley Park - McKinley Park - DNAinfo.com Chicago http://ow.ly/ly0WA

  • Chicago school closures: Teachers’ union and parents file third lawsuit — MSNBC http://ow.ly/ly1FM

  • "Some critics suggest CTU should narrow its agenda and stick to the lower-profile task of protecting their members. “CTU needs to focus their energy on getting their teachers at the closing schools into the receiving schools,” says Rod Estvan, an education policy analyst for Access Living, a disability rights group. “That needs to be their sole focus.”

    As always Mr. Estvan is right. Good teachers should not loose their jobs (or be without jobs until October). The CTU should go door-to-door to help parents register kids at receiving schools. Stop spending money on lawyers and their unwinnable lawsuits.

  • In reply to CPS Parent:

    That article was written before the case filed on the hearing officers decisions. The CTU has done a good job with that compliant and it has merit. But I still believe the union needs to focus on trying to keep good teachers from the closing schools, these teachers unless they are older have other job options and they will not sit around waiting to become unemployed.

    The first two law suits the CTU filed are much more complex than the last one. The special education component involves a relatively complex claim based on projections of educational conditions at receiving schools. From a pragmatic perspective the union has to assume their chance of success is not high.

    I agree with CPS parent that the union should encourage families at closing schools to register at the welcoming schools. I do not believe that would preclude those families from seeking other options including charters, other CPS schools, or even home schooling. But I have great reservations about home schooling for families that are low income and the adults may have limited education themselves. Home schooling students with disabilities is very difficult especially if the child has a severe disability. It puts families into a 24/7 care situation that can be overwhelming.

    Rod Estvan

  • CPS "joins a list of major cities shutting down large numbers of schools" says @edweek http://ow.ly/lz2JW

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