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PI Original
by Matthew Blake
Wed Nov 14, 2012

Democratic Super Majority May Change Little In Springfield

The election was a triumph for Illinois Democrats and a disaster for Prairie State Republicans, with Democrats gaining super majorities in both the Illinois House and Senate. But what progressive policy will emerge from Springfield’s new make up is hard to discern.

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Mon Sep 17, 2012

Quinn Sits Out On Chicago Teachers' Strike

With the Chicago Teachers Union strike spilling into its second week, Gov. Pat Quinn skipped across state lines today for a meeting of the Midwest U.S.-Japan Association in Minneapolis. The meeting involved Japanese business leaders “strengthening economic ties to Illinois,” according to a press release.

Despite signing into law major education bills integral to the labor standoff, Quinn has been on the sidelines for the first Chicago teachers strike in 25 years. Asked last week what the governor thought of the dispute, Quinn spokeswoman Brooke Anderson e-mailed that, “We want the parties to negotiate in good faith and reach a resolution quickly that puts the students first.”

Quick Hit
by Matthew Blake
Mon Sep 17, 2012

In Chicago Teachers Strike, CPS Goes On The Offensive

The top of the Chicago Public Schools strike contingency plan Web site today reads, “Due to the Chicago Teachers Union Leadership’s choice to strike, Chicago Public Schools will have 147 Children First sites open on Monday, September 17.”

Such is the level of anger in the labor standoff that even a district informational site takes a shot at the so-called strike of choice. Past union criticisms from CPS and even Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel often were tempered with the claim that a deal was close. But the CTU House of Delegates' decision yesterday to give themselves two more days before voting on whether to end the strike has changed this.

Quick Hit
by Aricka Flowers
Fri Sep 14, 2012

Skeleton of CTU Agreement In Place, Union Releases Telling Video On School Conditions (VIDEO)

The Chicago Teachers Union House of Delegates are being presented with the "outlines of an agreement" today, according to the Chicago Tribune, and could vote as soon as Sunday on whether or not it's time to end the strike.

"We have the outlines of an agreement on the major issues, but it's not for this (negotiating) committee to decide if we have a deal," CTU attorney Robert Bloch told the newspaper. "It's for the membership of the union to decide that, and it's for the House of Delegates to determine whether we'll suspend the strike."

While students and teachers could be back in school as soon as Monday, depending on how the House of Delegates votes, the union released a video today illustrating the state of Chicago public school conditions and the uneven allocation of resources and programs in a new video that acts as a response to negative TV ads about the strike by school reform groups.