Sit-In; Mayor Rahm Emanuel Rescind School Closings

Sit-In; Mayor Rahm Emanuel Rescind Decision to Close Schools

Video Footage Sent in Real Time. November 2, 2012 5:54:06 PM CT

Mayor Rahm Emanuel Rescind School Closings: Sit-In. Save Our Schools joins concerned citizens in Chicago while they wait to speak with Mayor Emanuel about community school closings. With September’s teachers’ strike fading in the rear view mirror the Chicago School Board’s attention now turns to the subject of school closures. Reports have anywhere between 80 to 120 schools closing to be replaced with charter schools, and that the Emanuel administration will begin a targeted outreach program to promote the charter school option once a deal has been reached with the teachers union.

Charter schools have been a thorn in the side of Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis, who has been vocal about how they divert much-needed funds away from neighborhood schools. There’s also the matter of laid off union teachers having the first crack at new hires that open within the system, one of the major concessions won by CTU in the new deal with the School Board. Charter schools largely are non-unionized: Only 14 of the 96 charter schools working with CPS have union representation; 12 of them have non-strike clauses in their contracts.

On Monday CTU launched a new website, Move Chicago Schools Forward, which aims to serve as a resource for teachers, parents and students to fight school closings proposed by the School Board. Lewis said in a statement to media announcing the website’s launch:

Today’s students have suffered from years of experimentation as CPS closed, turned around and consolidated their schools. These unproven “fixes” have nothing to do with our children and more to do with real estate transactions and rewarding politically-connected for-profit charter operations with school buildings. is an initiative focused on informing the public about how to get involved in the ongoing fight for more resources and support for our students and educators.

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