Saturday, August 25, 2012

Union leaders have Chicago teachers wanting more - Chicago Tribune

Union leaders have Chicago teachers wanting more - Chicago Tribune:


Union leaders have Chicago teachers wanting more

Rank and file's expectations may make contract talks more difficult


August 24, 2012|By Noreen S. Ahmed-Ullah, Joel Hood and Kristen Mack, Chicago Tribune reporters
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After nine months of firing up its members for a possible strike amid rancorous contract talks, Chicago Teachers Union leaders may be hard-pressed to secure a deal that satisfies members.
"If you're preparing teachers for a strike, you have to create a sense of militancy and a sense of expectation," said Rod Estvan, education policy analyst with disability rights group Access Living. "Once you create that sense of expectation, you may have created thresholds below which you cannot go."
At a meeting last week, riled-up union delegates yelled "Strike!" as officials read a list of the district's proposals, which include 2 percent raises for each of the four years of a contract.
The delegates loudly gave union President Karen Lewis authority to file a 10-day strike notice. But no notice has been filed as of this weekend, meaning school will start on time when the bell rings for most Chicago Public Schools students Sept. 4.
Teachers have a practical reason for not wanting to be on strike the first day of school. To secure health insurance, teachers have to work at least one day in a month.

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