The March 2015 Issue of Substance
MEDIA WATCH: TRIBUNE getting it right about Rahm's lies over the school closings -- and the 'longer school day'.... Before you know it, we'll also revisit Rahm's paid protesters on behalf of closing 'What did you say this school was called'?...
To listen to Chicago's mayor talk about the past four years, an out-of-town visitor might think that Chicago's mayor since 2011 was some guy named Joe Bluffwell or Sam Storyteller. After all, we now know . . .
Are teachers and PSRPs going to have to pass a PARCC on transubstantiation?... CPS doubles down on religious discrimination in 'Good Friday' rules...
One week from "Good Friday" and the "Easter Weekend" beginning of Chicago's Spring Break, the CPS administration has come up with guidelines for teachers and other staff who want to take a "religious holiday" day . . .
RAHM pushes shopper while campaigning inside a Target store... 'Get that thing out of your face...' mayor tells voter who is photographing his glad handing at the Target....
It was no surprise to anyone who had covered a Rahm Emanuel press conference during any of the first three years Rahm was in power. The guy was about as arrogant to reporters as anyone . . .
March 26 'Rally for Educational Justice' features upcoming CTU contract fight and speakers from others cities...
It was a little chilly, but several hundred people were in attendance at the Rally for Education Justice at the Thomprson Building on March 26, 2015. The crowd estimate was according to Jackson Potter, CTU . . .
CTU rally on March 26... Buses leaving from six locations across the city so people don't have to pay extortionist downtown parking prices...
The Chicago Teachers Union is providing buses to its March 26, 2015 rally downtown (at the Thompson Center) from six locations across the city. Such actions have become necessary since Chicago's privatized downtown parking costs . . .
One of Chicago's best known and most successful elementary school principals has told her school and the press that this is her last year as an administrator in Chicago Public Schools. The principal, Elizabeth Heurtefeu, . . .
A new video is now available from Labor Beat On YouTube at: http://youtu.be/uGZCZ8XV_xo providing the public with information about the strike of refinery workers at the BP Whiting refinery. The video, less than ten minutes . . .
RAHMWATCH: Start election week(s) with snow, a protest against King High School's tyrants, and our newest song, Rahm's lies, from the songsters of the Southeast Side....
While we continue serving up talent every time we're in a fight, each fights brings out some really creative stuff from our side. So this year the first out of the gate comes from Chicago's . . .
RAHMWATCH: SUBSTANCE is now looking for the best art of the day, so we'll begin with this photograph courtesy of a lifelong friend... We don't know where this creativity will end, so keep sharing your best and we'll print it daily...
One of the greatest things about a Chicago election is that it gives rise to so much creativity and even a bit of art. Rahm Emanuel's campaign, for example, has decided not only to understate . . .
BOOK REVIEW: A Review of "Strike Back: Using the Militant Tactics of Labor’s Past to Reignite Public Sector Unionism Today" by Joe Burns...
“A Review of Strike Back: Using the Militant Tactics of Labor’s Past to Reignite Public Sector Unionism Today by Joe Burns”... Brooklyn, NY: IG Publishing ISBN: 978-1-935439-89-9 (paperback)... The book costs about $17 in paperback . . .
With less a little over two weeks until the April 7 voting, every day is counting for those mobilizing to replace Rahm and his billionaire buddies with a man of the people who will represent . . .
Pensions... Legislation proposed in Springfield -- House Bill 3695-- will restore the pension tax levy ... The Chicago Teachers' Pension Fund on March 20 announced support for HB 3695, sponsored by State Rep. Marcus C. Evans, Jr., and Speaker Michael J. Madigan....
The Chicago Teachers Pension Fund (CTPF.org) has issued a press release saying that the fund supports HB 3695, which would restore the pension tax levy. The tax levy, which was abolished to provide more "flexibility" . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Atrocities in Network 6... '...it is truly reprehensible that the district is condoning the mistreatment of children who are sensibly refusing to participate by allowing Network Chiefs to once again inappropriately pressure principals to suppress opt-outs...'
[Editor's Note: The following report, along with the letter to Barbara Byrd Bennet, was sent out to readers by More Than A Score on March 19, 2015. We are reprinting it because of its importance . . .
Teachers to picket BP in downtown Chicago on March 19 in support of striking refinery workers in Whiting Indiana...
Members of the Chicago Teachers Union will picket at 11:00 a.m. on March 19, 2015 at the offices of BP. BP is the oil company that dumped millions of gallons of oil into the Gulf . . .
The newly revitalized and growing Black Caucus of the Chicago Teachers Union is sponsoring what it is calling its "Heritage Curriculum Fair on Saturday, March 28, 2015, at Chicago's Westinghouse High School. Heritage Curriculum Fair . . .
MEDIA WATCH: Racist and patronizing coverage masking as 'news'... New York Times 'news' pages continue to ignore the facts to slant coverage based on the new narrative set by Rahm Emanuel's neoliberal corporate media supporters...
When I re-read the March 16, 2015 story in my print copy of The New York Times (we subsribe to print and on line), I almost shouted out loud. The only thing missing from the . . .
CHICAGO ALDERMANIC RUNOFF NEWS: Race heats up in 15th Ward as Rafael Yañez charges opponent with support for for-profit prison industry
[Editor's Note: The following press release was received on March 16, 2015, from the campaign of Mr. Yanez. We are printing it here in full. As many of our readers know, the Chicago Teachers Union . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: 'Organized Confusion: PARCC Hypocrisy, Bullying, and Fear-Mongering in CPS... An Open Letter to Barbara Byrd-Bennett, CEO of Chicago Public Schools...' with a 'cc' to Mayor Rahm Emanuel....
[Editor's Note: As we have been pointing out here at substancenews.net for years, and especially this year as the "Opt Out Explosion" has exploded in Chicago, across Illinois, and nationally, most teachers and principals are . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Salaries of principals and assistant principals (like those at Douglas Taylor Elementary School) are public information... The Board publishes them as part of its 'transparency' policy...
Anyone who wanted to know that William Truesdale, principal of Taylor Elementary School, is being paid $149,399 this school year didn't have to read Substance, but could simply go to the Chicago Board of Education . . .
SEIU backs Chuy Garcia while scab herding Local 73 president and vice president red bait their own state union while continuing their suck up to Rahm Emanuel...
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) has announced that it is supporting Chuy Garcia for Mayor of Chicago in the April 7 runoff against incumbent Rahm Emanuel. One local, Local 73, not only tried to . . .
An upcoming event sponsored by the Working Women's History Project is being held on March 28, 2015 at the Irish American Center 4626 N. Knox in Chicago (beginning at five p.m.). It is a benefit, . . .
Chuy video traces career in photographs and song while preparing for the massive South Side St. Patrick's Day parade
Pearson is accused of spying on students during PARCC tests...'The DOE informed us that Pearson is monitoring all social media during the PARCC testing'....
On MARCH 13, 2015, a New Jersey blogger named Bob Braun published an explosive expose charging that Pearson, the corporation that has long produced most of the controversial "standardized" tests used across the USA for . . .
OPT OUT 2015: More Than A Score's Julie Fain to host informational meeting on the PARCC Opt Out in Evanston March 31, 2015....
As the Opt Out movement against the PARCC testing program explodes across the USA and shows up at at least 300 of Chicago's 600 public schools, local activists from Chicago will present in the suburbs . . .
RAHMWATCH: Privatization and profits for Board of Education members... At least during the 1930s, Al Capone's cronies didn't get sanctimonious when the public learned they were profiteering off school dollars...
Chicago ripoffs of public school dollars have taken place since the original development of the city's public schools, and under dozens of mayors (note: Chicago has always -- ALWAYS -- had a school board appointed . . .
Momentum builds for Chuy Garcia prior to major appearance in Logan Square on Thursday, March 12. Rahm continued avoiding real reporters and the common people...'Potholes but not people' preside over Rahm's carefully controlled public events....
While Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel continues to hide from reporters and the public, his challenger in the April 7 runoff election continues to gather support across the city. Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia, who . . .
MEDIA WATCH: Corporate propaganda as 'news' on Chicago's 'public' TV... Channel 11 uses Gates Foundation front group -- Teach Plus -- to claim that PARCC has teacher support, as if Teach Plus were more than propaganda for PARCC and corporate 'reform'...
As the largest Opt Out movement in Chicago and Illinois history exploded across Chicago's public schools, Chicago's "public" TV station, WTTW Channel 11, decided that propaganda from the organization called "Teach Plus" was speaking for . . .
MEDIA WATCH: Homan Square Police Site and the Mainstream Media’s Lack of Concern: Chicago Media Exposed for its Deceitfulness
We all know we’re not supposed to lie. As every adult knows, and as most teenagers figure out as well, there are two types of lies: lies of commission and lies of omission. Lies of . . .
RAHMWATCH: Since 2011, Rahm has doubled residential water (and sewer) bills. But that's not a 'tax increase', just one of those 'revenue enhancement' thingies Rahm's foisted on Chicago while scripting each chapter of 'Chicagoland'...
If you own a Chicago home, say in the "Bungalow Belt" (as I do), your water (and sewer) bill just came, and it's due next week. And if you've saved your paperwork (as we often . . .
[Editor's Note: The following was published as "The Meaning of International Women’s Day" by Alexandra Kollantai March 8, 2015 by Jacobin. The origins of the international socialist markings of the women's movement are, are explained . . .
The attack on workers comp rights... 'Over the past decade, state after state has been dismantling America's workers' comp system with disastrous consequences for many of the hundreds of thousands of people who suffer serious injuries at work each year...'
[Editor's Note: We are sharing the article below from Pro Publica with our readers this morning, because the danger outlined in it is real in Illinois and Chicago. Anyone who has worked for any serious . . .
MEDIA WATCH: OMG! They were Rude To Rahm! After four years of Rahm's staging hundreds of media events, DNA Info fulminates against the so-called 'staging' of the mental health advocates' confrontation with Rahm in Wicker Park....
For the past four years, Substance has been reporting, on a regular basis, about the media events carefully staged by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and his enormous City Hall Press Office media team -- a team . . .
RAHMWATCH: 'The number you have reached has been disconnected or is no longer in service...' The Star 69 call said after I received a call from Rahm's people on March 7... Is Rahm's GOTV phone operation fraudulent -- as this morning's rude interruption at our home shows....
On Saturday, March 7, 2015, we received a phone call at our home asking me whether we were going to vote for Rahm Emanuel on April 7 (now one month away). But the phone call . . .
[Editor's Note: Chicago is in the middle of several major upheavals, only one of which is the municipal election that will unseat the tyrannical mayor Rahm Emanuel on April 7. Right now, parents across the . . .
If you listened to or watched the news on March 4, 2015, you'd have learned that Rahm Emanuel may have once drunk expensive wine with his buddy Bruce Rauner, but now he was opposed -- . . .
Now that Chicago is in the home stretch in the 2015 municipal elections and most media attention will be focused on the mayoral race, it's still important to report the news from the aldermanic runoffs. . . .
RAHMWATCH: Rahm's whole career has been an attack on working people and unions... Salon analysis takes Rahm's arrogance back a quarter century.... 'On April 7 pay-to-play politics goes on trial in Chicago. The voters will be the judges...'
[Editor's Note: During the week before February 24, 2015, every ruling class media mouthpiece assured their readers that Rahm Emanuel would win the municipal election, despite the organizations arrayed against him. Among others, The New . . .
Traced back to Rahm Emanuel's NATO security frenzy... Protesters Target Chicago Police Department 'Black Site' at Homan Square; Demand that City 'Shut it Down!'
About 200 protesters rallied on February 28, 2015, at the Chicago Police Department’s “black site” at Homan Square, 3379 W. Fillmore (next to Homan Avenue) on a cold, but sunny day. The racially mixed but . . .
America Federation of Teachers joins reactionary panel in support of Common Core at Ed Writers Association... 'Opt Out Movement' viewed as the enemy of so-called 'standards'! while Ed Writers broadens its blacklist of who is a 'journalist'...
Continuing its rear-guard action defending the Common Core and corporate education "reform", the American Federation of Teachers sent one of its most prominent personalities to the annual Education Writers Association conference to be on a . . .
'Non Partisan' Chicago elections were contrived after Harold Washington's 1983 and 1987 election victories
For decades, Chicago held its municipal elections in two parts: a party primary in February and the general election in April. Following the surprise (to some) election of Harold Washington as Mayor of Chicago in . . .
Scab 'union' goes all Hollywood for Chicago's creepy mayor... RAHMLOVE theme is getting its send ups in the city of 'The Second City'... 'Listen, girlfriend, promise me you won't stay with this guy. He's just no good for you...'
As the Chicago mayoral election of 2015 goes into its final week, it's clear the mayor is getting more and more desperate. Yesterday, a guy we hadn't seen in four years, the old precinct captain . . .
BOARDWATCH: Chicago Board of Education meeting of March 25, 2015 was highlighted by large public protests against against the filth program due to the Board's privatization of custodial services... CPS officials also continued to repeat their lies about CPS 'losing money' due to PARCC Opt Outs....
Workers in purple and gold jackets from Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1, waving gold banners, marched and chanted along the north side of Madison Street in front of the headquarters of the Chicago . . .
Chicago kids face testing orgy from now until June... 'The first day of a regular school day (without a testing window being open) after Spring Break is June 15th...'
Anyone who believed that overtesting in Chicago was over after the PARCC -- and the unprecedented PARCC Opt Out -- was not only wrong, but VERY VERY WRONG. Just as last year Chicago children had . . .
BOARDWATCH: Of course you can take the PARCC with mouse turds on the computer!... Washington High School gets another 'We'll get back to you on that...' a decade after the Board first promised to fix its leaky roof and get rid of the mice, rats, and roaches infesting the building...
More than a decade after the Chicago Board of Education promised to fix the leaky roof and make other repairs on Washington High School on Chicago's far Southeast Side, parents returned to a meeting of . . .
[Editor's Note: The following analysis was published by socialistworker on March 26, 2015 and is published here at substancenews.net with permission. We hope that our readers will take the time to comment on the challenging . . .
BOARDWATCH: Chicago Board of Education ignores parent protests against lies from schools trying to discourage Opt Out...'In addition to this completely unacceptable behavior of adults in our schools, the PARCC continues to disrupt the education of our children:..'
[Editor's Note: Although protests have been taking place across Chicago since the first days of the PARCC testing began, the members of the Chicago Board of Education and Board "Chief Executive Office" Barbara Byrd Bennett . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Parents and teachers join at Curie High School to protest against Curie administration's bullying -- and police lies -- about the rights of citizens to protest peacefully on the city sidewalk outside the school....
Although the majority of Chicago public schools where the Opt Out movement has taken place this year continue to treat children and families choosing to opt out in a professional way, a small handful of . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Panel at the monthly CORE meeting shows scope of Opt Out movement and some aspects of the racist attacks on Opt Out parents (and children) by top CPS officials, including principals and 'Network' administrators...
Despite the early Spring snow, more than 70 people arrived at Chicago's Letter Carriers union hall at 39th and Wabash for the monthly meeting of CORE (the Caucus of Rank and File Educators), which was . . .
RAHMWATCH: WTF should Chuy have a 'plan' when history shows that Rahm's 2011 plan was to script his 'Chicagoland' nonsense and screw poor and working class Chicago?...
I hate to be short tempered, but for the past week I've been hearing some usually intelligent people sounding like the Winnetka and Kenilworth assholes who write editorials for the Chicago Tribune, demanding that Chuy . . .
Bernie Sanders, the U.S. Senate's only socialist, will be in Chicago April 2 join Chuy Garcia to support Sue Sadlowski Garza out in the 10th ward...
US Senator Bernie Sanders is coming to Chicago on Thursday, April 2nd, to support the campaign of Susan Sadlowski Garza for Alderman of the 10th Ward, and Jesus “Chuy” Garcia for Mayor of Chicago. Garza, . . .
RAHMWATCH: How Rahm's Wall Street buddies continue screwing Chicago's children through the 'toxic swaps', while Rahm's Board of Ed stonewalled on recouping millions from the 'swaps.' Finally, now, national news is paying attention to this bit of Rahm's CPS corruption....
[Editor's Note: For years, Substance and researchers at the Chicago Teachers Union exposed the cost to Chicago's public schools of the "toxic swaps" entered into by the Chicago Board of Education during the time that . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Parents want truth not confusion... Protesters at South Shore 'Fine Arts Academy' on March 18 bring the facts about PARCC and Opt Out to the school after disinformation had been provided by school administrators...
Parents received the truth today at South Shore Fine Arts Academy, a Chicago elementary school, on March 18, 2015, as a dozen people showed up at the school to provide teachers, parents, and children with . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Militants to picket South Shore 'Fine Arts Academy' elementary school in Chicago on March 18 in protest against principal's bullying of Opt Out supporters among teachers, parents and students
Despite the confusion caused by the waffling of Chicago Public Schools Chief Executive Officer Barbara Byrd Bennett and the disinformation campaign currently being waged by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), the Opt Out . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Meeks continues lying in defense of corporate school reform almost as soon as Rauner makes him president of ISBE.... But Arne Duncan says feds never threatened loss of billions of dollars!...'When asked why he [Duncan] threatened to cut off federal funding, he denied it...'
Continuing what can only be described as a notorious career of mendacity and duplicity, the Rev. James Meeks has launched an enormous amount of confusion across Illinois by proclaiming, without a factual basis, that Illinois . . .
OPT OUT NEWS: Pearson's spying on students is just another example of why Opt Out has to explode this year ... 'those in power always want to maintain maximum secrecy for themselves, and protect what they see is their own privacy rights... while having little or no respect for the rights of others..
[Editor's Note: The following was circulated by the NYC parent group Class Size Matters on Monday, March 16, 2015, showing again why Pearson is "creepy" and worse. Substance shares this lengthy piece with our readers . . .
Opt Out harassment of teachers and children continues at Chicago's Taylor Elementary School... One CPS teacher’s further experiences with administering the PARCC test and honoring the rights of parents and children to Opt Out...
Note: I will continue to blow the whistle on conditions and experiences of my employment related to so-called “standardized testing” that I believe are not appropriate for teachers and other employees as well as students . . .
Bill Fletcher Jr., Author of “They’re Bankrupting Us!’ And 20 other Myths about Unions", spoke to the Chicago Teachers Union delegates training at Westinghouse High School on March 14, 2015.
Fletcher told the group that . . .
RAHMWATCH: Maybe we'll get a book about 'Mayor Poopypants', but... Angry mothers group led by 'Bad Ass Moms' from Rahm's closed schools to protest at Rahm's home on March 28. The visit to Rahm's front yard will take place after a march charging that Chicago's mayor is, like a loaded diaper, full of
One of the several ironies of the week that Chicago began the infamous PARCC testing program was that Dav Pilkey, a famous and beloved best selling author of books for children, was appearing at the . . .
Chuy comes to Logan Square for massive rally on March 12... As the huge Logan Square auditorium filled to its more than 700 capacity, the candidate told the excited crowd, 'The Coalition of Chicago is Back!'
Showing Chicago a whole different concept of governing, and an appreciation for the people of our city, mayoral candidate Chuy Garcia came to Logan Square on March 12th and received a enthusiastic welcome from the . . .
Fifty protesters chase after Arne Duncan chanting against the PARCC tests... Rahm defends Common Core and PARCC as protesters greet U.S. Secretary of Education during another White House publicity stunt for Emanuel's desperate election run...
Ignoring the fact that his own high-school-age son attends a school (the University of Chicago Lab School) that does not follow Common Core or obsess so-called "standardized" testing, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel mounted a vigorous . . .
Chuy Garcia receives standing ovation from more than 200 Chicago Teachers Union leaders during surprise appearance at CTU leadership training on March 12...Meanwhile, Rahm is hiding from the people and refusing to answer questions from reporters he doesn't already own...
More than 200 Chicago Teachers Union staff and delegates gave a standing ovation to mayoral candidate Jesus "Chuy" Garcia when he showed up to thank the teachers and the CTU for support. The brief appearance . . .
RAHMWATCH: Are election ethics for suckers -- and teachers!? CPS School workers are being warned not to wear 'Chuy' buttons, while Rahm's people blanket one CPS phone system with Rahm propaganda... CPS using Board phones and texts to promote Rahm's re-election!
Maybe one of the things that Rahm Emanuel learned during his years as a hatchet man for Richard M. Daley, Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama is that "ethics are for suckers." (As readers here know, . . .
One CPS teacher’s experience giving the PARCC Test... While PARCC opt outs are generally being respected, administrators at at least one South Side school, supported by their 'Network', tried to bully kids and teachers on the first day of PARCC 2015...
By the end of the school day on March 11, 2015, the first day of PARCC testing for Chicago children, media reports and other sources of news are telling a story from across Chicago of . . .
LABOR BEAT: Elected school board fight has grueling history in Chicago lately, including the current Board's dragging its critics out of the room!... Labor Beat archives share some highlights of the fight that led to the historic 90 percent vote for an elected school board...
Chicago Demands Democratic Control of Public Education will be aired on CAN TV this Thursday (March 12). Friday, and next week as Chicago comes to terms with the overwhelming vote on February 24, 2015, in . . .
[Editor's Note: This was delightful and deserves to be shared. As the debates about PARCC reach their peak as the PARCC testing looms, we share with credit to the author. George N. Schmidt, Editor Substance].
. . .
OPT OUT 2015: Chicago Teachers Union declares Opt Out is a right of all parents and children!... 'The CTU reiterates its wholesale opposition to the PARCC test. This test has no educational value...'
[Editor's Note: The following information was distributed by the Chicago Teachers Union on March 6, 2015. Sadly, some principals (not all) have been trying to stop children from opting out, and threatening teachers who provide . . .
Even the nation's major newspapers are finally noting that the PARCC tests are nonsense, and as more and more reporters (and even some editors, although not at the Chicago Tribune or Sun-Times) actually go on . . .
Edison principal, others in frantic attempt to stop families from getting Opt Out information... A report on the efforts of administrators to block the right of students to refuse to take the PARCC tests...
A frantic attempt to stop opt-out leafleting was made on March 4, 2015 and failed because those distributing the opt out materials knew the law and held our ground. Here is a first hand report . . .
Chicago Teachers Union challenges CPS 'security' form as PARCC testing program begins against the opposition of hundreds of teachers and thousands of students and families
In the wake of the last minute decision by Chicago Public Schools officials to administer the PARCC test in all of the city's elementary schools, the Chicago Teachers Union has taken the dramatic step of . . .
RAHMWATCH: 'That sludgy sea of mendacity...' since Rahm started at City Hall more than 20 years ago... The lies shift as the months pass, but Rahm's 'Mendacious Scripts' began in June 2011 -- the new 'Rahm Board of Education' began lying about its budget and stealing a raise from CPS workers...
Looking back on it after four years, it's clear that the lies of the Emanuel administration began as soon as Rahm had installed his "new" Board of Education and executive team in May and June . . .
ED WRITERS: Substance story from 2003 shows that the hypocrisy of 'Ed Writers' was nothing new in 2015...'the EWA conference room had plenty of wattage; what it lacked was intellectual illumination....' (Susan Ohanian).
[Editor's Note: We were happy to be reminded that our friend Susan Ohanian was in Chicago for the 'Ed Writers" meeting back in 2003, and that little has really changed since then. The Ed Writers . . .
[Editor's Note: With the reprint of the article below (which originally appeared almost a year ago) we are beginning a daily RAHMWATCH feature at substancenews.net. This feature will consist of original reporting by our staff . . .
BOARDWATCH: Chicago Board of Education meeting of February 25, 2015 continued the Board's privatization and charter school policies despite the verdicts of the February 24 municipal election against Rahm Emanuel and the massive vote for an elected school board!
The Chicago Board of Education met on February 25, 2015, the day after the vast majority of voters in Chicago voted that it should not exist in the form it has taken for more than . . .