Rarely is the choice between salary and class size presented in such a stark manner.I truly hope that the CTU rejects the raise in favor of sticking by class size limits that are still too large, but as many of NYC teacher friends remind me, I am not a teacher…. I would like to hear from teachers on the list about what they would choose if confronted with such a decision, and why.
Let's be careful here.
Incoming President from CORE Karen
"Lewis urged the board to first cut expensive curriculum created by outsiders, high-stakes testing and a long line of pricey vendors and consultants. "I would implore you to reconsider,'
Yes there are other choices and we must not let the people who have run these systems into the ground manipulate events to pit parents against teachers - the goal here.
IN Chicago I believe they can't negotiate class size in contracts and one of the planks of CORE is to get that right. Let's look into the future: CORE gives in now on the raise but loses enough internal power that the long-time fight for class size is harmed. I believe they are committed to fighting for salary and class size - not like the UFT - see below.
Do they really fear a strike? Would they in NYC from the UFT which would lose dues checkoff and everyone know they will never strike no matter what happens. Neither would the old guard in Chicago. But with CORE being more militant, there is some doubt.
We must be clear who is framing the choice. If a body like the DOE signs a contract and wants to get out of it the use the class size issue to turn the public against the teachers. BloomKlein tried to do the same thing here in not giving teachers a raise - but there is no contract so they can get away with it.
By the way - I got a call from Chicago yesterday and they tell me there is talk of furloughs - up to 10 days.
We can't keep falling for this tactic.
What is to stop them from making other claims? Books and supplies or class size?
Bus service or class size? It is extortion.
In NYC take the 42 minutes that many teachers think is a waste. Would they be happy losing the money if they cut these minutes?
Remember in NYC in 1975 they cut the school week by an hour and a half - 2 periods and the teachers gave up 2 preps a week in the fiscal crisis. Teachers also took a pay freeze for years.
We would hear screams of outrage. So why if Chicago teachers are due a 4% raise do we fall for this ploy?
We face a similar issue in the UFT when we want class size included in contract negotiations and the UFT always says it will come out of a raise. Now if we had a democratic union this issue would be debated and we would see where teachers really stand on the issue. UFT surveys often put the same issue in stark terms without nuance.
Chicago School Board opens door to 35 in a class
Board expects to honor 4% raise, but hopes teachers union will back concessions
During a dramatic emergency meeting, board members also blocked any chance of a teacher strike over pay by indicating they expect to honor the 4 percent pay raises promised to teachers and seven other school unions -- an increase valued at $135 million.