Wendy Katten is the Director of Illinois Raise Your Hand and she is one of the parent activists like Matt Farmer and Jitu Brown that Chicago’s teachers and students are so lucky to have. Watch her just go through Jesse Ruiz like a hot knife through butter.
I am getting a kick out of the coverage of the PACT/UPC group that’s running for the CTU executive board. The media is making it sound like CTU is splintering. When was the last union election that PACT and UPC didn’t participate in? This isn’t a rebellion, it’s part of having a Democratic union. Anybody who thinks CORE always gets their way hasn’t been paying much attention to the House of Delegates meetings. I expect CORE to win this election handily, but I also would have been shocked if nobody tried to run against them.
:”I almost felt bad for Jesse Ruiz last night as I watched him play the fool to Wendy Katten on Chicago Tonight. Armed only with an embarrassed grin, a pocket full of cliches (“it’s for the kids”… “it’s about teaching and learning”…”all hands on deck”…) and a bag full of half-truths and misinformation, Rahm’s hand-picked board V.P Ruiz was sent out to face the Raise Your Hand’s Wendy Katten and Catalyst’s Rebecca Harris to try and defend the indefensible — CPS’s list of 129 “underutilized” schools slated for closure.”
“Members of the “coalition” slate told reporters that many teachers and other union members weren’t in favor of the contract negotiated by the Lewis team during the seven-day strike in September, but only voted for it to get back to the classroom. Saunders-Wolffe and Ochoa at the time were part of the union’s negotiating team, the so-called “big bargaining team” assembled by Karen Lewis and the union’s officers for the first time in union history. The “big bargaining team” was present for most of the key negotiations during the summer and strike so that the union’s four officers and attorneys had access to the direct rank-and-file experience of the members. The “big bargaining team” was assembled with Lewis and the union’s officers on the night of September 9, 2012, when Lewis announced that negotiations had failed to reach a contract and that the first CTU strike in 25 years would begin at midnight that night.”
“The amount of time I am spending either plugging the holes or tag-teaming can be between an hour and two hours, almost every single day,” Witzl says. “It is extremely stressful. Day-to-day operations are being disrupted. We don’t have any subs coming out to the schools, and we don’t know why.”
“We spend a lot of time criticizing our elected officials for the bad decisions they make, or for wimping out when we want them to stick up for us.
But it may be even more important to thank them when they are right. The 35 Chicago aldermen who signed on in support of a moratorium on new charter schools are going up against Mayor Emanuel and his charter-cheerleader hedge fund cronies, along with all so many others in power across the nation from Arne Duncan on down.”