Teacher StrikeThe impact of the 7 day Chicago Public School teacher strike is a complex problem for each stakeholder.
City officials, principals, teachers, parents and children all voice their frustrations and positions
regarding the teacher strike. The strike was positioned as Emanuel vs. Lewis, but Lewis was contending
with a union that installed her in order to take a more active stance and Emanuel’s plan, at least from
publicly, was similarly aggressive. Inevitably, Emanuel and Lewis would meet. Consensus is that the CTU
won, but Lewis admits that the actual contractual gains are unsatisfactory to her and the union. CTU
came through over two decades of insufficiently strong (for the membership's desires) leadership, and
Lewis took over after a major power shift. The teachers union expect that in the course of a couple of
years that the union would change its internal stance and that by electing a competent head achieve all its
goals in an anti-union environment during a period of austerity, all while contending with a figure like Rahm
Emanuel. CTU positioned itself for future battles, such as school closings, and fighting attempts of the mayor
to eliminate unions, close to up 120 and open charter schools with non-unionized teachers.
Delegates for the Chicago Teachers Union filed a 10 day strike notice on August 29, 2012 and the strike was official Monday, September 10, 2012. Now, one week after the new school year start the city experienced its first teachers strike in 25 years and picket lines formed across the city. Issues that were on the negotiating table to be addressed were complex and included the battle to maintain job security, to receive a 30% base raise, issues addressing classroom size and conditions, rejections to the Mayor’s attempts to institute merit pay, to fight off more stringent requirements in new teacher evaluation system, secure a recall policy for top performing teachers who are laid off because of school closings...