Rich Are ‘Drinking Champagne’: Chicago Teachers Union’s Rambling Statement on CA Tenure Decision

Karen Lewis tenure video
(screeen shot from video)

“Their time will come.” That was the promise Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis had for the “rich” tech “moguls” who are “drinking champagne” after California Judge Rolf Treu struck down tenure and other job protections for government school teachers.

Here’s Lewis’s rambling video statement in reaction to the ruling:

Lewis went on to assert that the rich are just jealous of teachers.

Specifically addressing David Welch, apparently the primary financial backer of the lawsuit, Lewis said:

“One of the reasons guys like this who have these jobs that don’t produce anything of value for people but they have to go find something else – there’s a lot of distrust and actually some jealousy of the fact that we do get to change the world on a regular basis every day. We do get the opportunity to educate children to change their lives and to make those relationships.

And there’s a certain amount of envy around those kinds of jobs. Where we actually create and do something meaningful with our lives. And this notion that, ‘oh, you want to be protected? You want to be compensated? You want to have pension benefits? You shouldn’t have any of that.

Lewis added she was disappointed at how easily the judge was swayed by “propaganda.”

How is Lewis and her union changing the world and what are they doing with the “opportunity to educate children to change their lives”?

Chicago Public Schools’ 2013 graduation rate was 65.4 percent. The school system issued a press release, boasting of the “record high” rate.

When the CTU went on strike in 2012, 20 percent of 8th graders tested proficient in math. Twenty-one percent of 8th graders tested proficient in reading.

OUCH! Chicago Public Schools prom theme: ‘This is Are Story’

This is Are Story
(illinoispolicy.org)

How many teachers and administrators looked at the promotional materials for the Paul Robeson High School prom?

EAGnews.org reports:

It’s hard to deny just how poorly Chicago’s public schools are performing when it hits you in the face. Such is the case with Paul Robeson High School’s 2014 prom theme: “This is Are Story.”

That image came from veteran investigative reporter Chuck Goudie, who posted this image on his Facebook page.

Some people might enjoy mocking the irony of the gross misuse of vocabulary.

But unless the organizers of the prom festivities planned the wording this way as a joke, there’s nothing funny about the situation.

Paul Robeson High School is located in the Englewood neighborhood on Chicago’s South Side, one of the poorest and most dangerous neighborhoods in the city. The high school also is part of the failing Chicago Public Schools, or CPS, system.

Four out of 10 CPS freshmen do not graduate.

Continue reading here.

Did the Chicago Teachers Union Create an Offensive Immigration-Themed Test Question to Make Conservatives seem Racist?

CTU Lewis
(Daily Mail)

Surely CTU President Karen Lewis and the other far-left activists in the union would never politicize student test questions – would they? We have to wonder, since a test question for seventh-graders identified two phony articles – supposedly written by conservatives who oppose citizenship for illegal immigrants. The articles read more like something published by the KKK than everyday conservatives.

WBEZ reports:

A test question for Chicago Public Schools seventh graders is being called “offensive,” “racist,” and factually inaccurate by groups as disparate as the Illinois Republican Party and the Chicago Teachers Union. …

The question asks pupils to read two commentaries—both opposed to undocumented immigrants becoming U.S. citizens—and evaluate the text and the authors’ biographies to determine “the most authoritative and relevant to support your argument OPPOSING a pathway to citizenship.”

“I think it’s best to keep America for Americans and those who know how to speak English properly,” says the first text. “Save America for those of us who know how to behave in law abiding ways.” The article says undocumented immigrants “should go back to where they came from,” and the author says he “dream(s) of a time when we ban all new immigrants to America both legal and illegal.”  The author is pictured as a black man named as Arie Payo, identified as a former aide to “President Bush’s Immigration Taskforce” and a contributor to “the Conservative Journal.”

But it turns out that Payo, his opinions, his credentials and even the “Conservative Journal” are all made up; so is the second text, in which small business owner “Stella Luna”— coincidentally the title of a children’s book—is identified as author of “The Dream Act is a Nightmare.” She worries that giving citizenship to immigrants “will increase the number of poor people in town.”

Interestingly, WBEZ says the test questions are created within the CPS system – not by an outside firm. More specifically, the station reports:

Officials said they do not know exactly who wrote the test question, but CPS said, in general, REACH performance tasks have been designed by teachers, including librarians, “in partnership with (the Chicago Teachers Union).”

Why in the world the union would be consulted on test questions is anyone’s guess, but it goes to show just how in control unions are of school governance.

Carol Caref, who works on teacher evaluation issues for the union, said CTU doesn’t know what revisions take place to REACH questions between the time teachers help create them and the time they become official CPS “performance tasks.”

“I can’t believe that very many eyes were on this particular performance task,” Caref said. “Because I can’t believe there isn’t someone who would have looked at this and said, ‘Whoa.’”

It’s unlikely only a few eyes looked at this. After all, the question was from the perspective of the fictitious “Conservative Journal,” and that’s how progressives view the opinions of conservatives. This is likely a CYA moment only because they got caught.

But if Caref is right – that only a few people looked at it – what does that say about quality control in Chicago Public Schools?