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Chicago ACTS
PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
3:35pm
Fri Aug 7

Urban Prep Faces Backlash Over Alleged Retaliatory Teacher Firings (VIDEO)

During a Friday morning protest, education and worker activists demanded that Urban Prep Academies "do the right thing" and reinstate the 16 teachers who claim they were fired in retaliation for joining a union.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
7:11pm
Tue Jun 30

CTU, Allies Protest Outside Municipal Bond Conference, Call For Progressive Revenue Options (VIDEO) (UPDATED)

While the Bond Buyer's Midwest Municipal Market Conference was being held Tuesday at the InterContinental Chicago hotel on Michigan Avenue, over a dozen Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) members and their allies protested outside the event this morning.

Holding signs reading, "CPS: Broke on Purpose," the education activists were there to highlight controversial financial deals the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) has with banks and to call for fair-share revenue options to help tackle the school district's pressing fiscal issues.

Those at the protest, spearheaded by the Caucus of Rank and File Educators (CORE), marched in a circle chanting, "Fat cats profit and kids come last. Who pays taxes? The working class."

"There's been numerous long-term financial deals, bond deals, swap deals that have put CPS under a heavy burden of debt," explained CTU organizer Martin Ritter. "They've got bad financial advisers. Many of them are at this conference."  

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
9:57am
Tue Apr 29, 2014

ChicagoQuest Charter School Staff Demand Accountability From Board, Push For Unionization (UPDATED)

Teachers at the Chicago International Charter Schools' (CICS) ChicagoQuest campus, who are organizing to form a union, held their own version of a school board meeting Monday night to demand accountability from the CICS board of directors and school management.

“We are trying really hard right now to be in contact with the [CICS] board to work together for improvements for our school and our network, and they’re shutting us out,” said Alex Krueger, a 7th grade teacher at ChicagoQuest, a “game-like learning” junior high school located on the city's Near North side.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
11:12am
Wed Jan 8, 2014

ChicagoQuest Charter School Staff Push To Form A Union

The majority of teachers and staff at the Chicago International Charter Schools' (CICS) ChicagoQuest campus on the Northwest Side are organizing to form a union.

Thirty-three out of the 34 staff members at the “game-like learning” junior high school, which centers its curriculum around systems-thinking and game design, announced publicly last month that they want to unionize in order to have a legal voice and actively participate in the school community's decision-making processes.

The charter school's staff are organizing a union "to negotiate a legally-binding contract with consistent, fair and public guidelines for evaluation, support and pay that will serve both to retain and recruit qualified and experienced teachers," the ChicagoQuest faculty members said in their mission statement delivered to school leaders last month.