Diane Ravitch, who was assistant secretary of education under George
H.W. Bush and then became a national spokeswoman against the
so-called education reform movement, says that Chicago has taken the
lead on education reform – and the revolt against such policies.
a professor at New York University, Ravitch told reporters at the
Chicago Teachers Union headquarters Monday that the strike gave
“vicarious exhilaration” to teachers across the nation that were “beaten
down” by evaluations based on standardized tests and charter schools.
Chicago is distinctive on education issues because of a “more militant”
teachers' union, noting that in much of the south, west and now to an
extent in northern states such as Wisconsin, “Teacher collective
bargaining rights are eliminated.”
Chicago Teachers Union members voted overwhelmingly this week to
approve a three-year contract, with the option of a fourth year, that
was hammered out amid a historic seven-day CTU strike. Now comes the
challenge of paying for the deal, which has so far largely played out as
a battle between the union and district on school closings.