Contract now goes to CTU members for vote...17-minute debate at the CTU House of Delegates before the vote was called on the 'tentative agreement' (TA)... The negatives stifled from the debate are noted here...

Seven years after they had to organize in opposition to the undemocratic tactics of their predecessors in the leadership of the Chicago Teachers Union, CTU President Karen Lewis and Vice President Jesse Shakey are happily maneuvering in the same way to suppress dissent and evade questions about problems with the last minute deal they are now presenting to the union's 28,000 members.Think again, anyone out there assuming Chicago Public School (CPS) employees who are Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) delegates, representing various positions within the schools, spent much time and energy in deliberation for the tentative agreement (TA) approved by CTU leadership and its Big Bargaining Team (BBT) at the deadline hours the night of Monday, October 10, 2016.

On Wednesday, October 19, 2016 the House of Delegates (HOD) officially held 17 minutes of debate for the TA. When motions are made at HOD meetings, the clock automatically sets for 15 minutes of debate. Delegates for and against motions stand in front of microphones; usually there are four mics, but there were only three for the special HOD meeting held at the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza located downtown, just west of the Merchandise Mart at 350 N. Orleans Street (Sauganash Ballroom, 14th floor). When HOD motions are considered, motions to extend debate can continue in 15-minute increments. If both sides of a debate (for and against a motion) have been presented, at least one from each side, what more-often-than-not happens is that someone “calls the question.”

This means the HOD votes on whether or not to stop the debate. If the “ayes” have it, the House then votes on the motion at hand without further debate.

Unfortunately what has been happening for a while now under CORE leadership, gradually until it has become something of a custom again -- again, because this is what occurred under previous CTU administrations as well –- the questions often get called after a series of cheerleader perspectives in favor of a motion while only one perspective in opposition has been heard. In fact, it is rather an exercise in futility for delegates to line up at the mics seeking a chance to speak regarding motions at HOD meetings, and especially “against” if that one voice against has already officially been heard. Unless a delegate is in the first mic positions, chances are overwhelmingly against getting a chance to speak before the question is called.

During the first 15 minutes of debate for this special HOD meeting on the TA, both sides were represented: four speakers were in favor, and four were against. At the special HOD meeting on the TA, the House appeared to split roughly 50/50 on a vote to extend debate; this was done via the voice-shouting vote of either “AYE!” or “NAY!”

President Karen Lewis made the judgment that the ayes had it, thus extending debate. There was a ruckus heard from the floor, as those who do not wish to debate anything moaned for even this one extension regarding the TA. Vice President Jesse Sharkey, who deferred some issues from the pre-meeting Q & A session held prior to the official start of the meeting, stating at that time that some issues would certainly be discussed further during the debate period, sounded almost pleading when he pointed out that this was a ruling of the chair and as he requested that the debate just please continue for a little longer.

However, after one further speaker was given her two minutes as per custom, BBT and CORE Steering Committee member, Michelle Gunderson, delegate at Nettlehorst Elementary School, called the question when she got her turn in line at a mic.

The end.

Thanks to Gunderson's motion, the HOD closed debate by a vote of 422 to 105.

The vote for the motion to pass the TA to the membership for a vote was: 328 YES to 153 NO.

Because the news media and CTU leadership have been bombarding both the membership and the public on what they consider to be the best portions of the TA, this report will present the TA portions that were seriously questioned during both the Q & A session (at least while this reporter and CTU delegate was present), and from the official debate itself (farther below). Related cut-and-pasted sections from the TA will accompany each question/concern.

[The reporter apologizes in advance for not getting all of the names and schools of the speakers.]

The following were questions and concerns raised during the informal Q & A session prior to start of HOD meeting, with the note that all of these questions were answered by VP Jesse Sharkey on behalf of CTU leadership. The more lengthy related Tentative Agreement (TA) sections are numbered and located at the bottom below the report.

1) Q: I arrived when the seating was approximately 1/3 filled, as the delegate from Waters School (in favor of the contract) was questioning in regard to who would fill the positions of case managers in elementary schools. A: The Board of Education (BOE) rejected CTU’s model, which would have been for these positions to be filled by paraprofessional and school-related personnel (PSRPs).

Basically, presently, there was no answer to this question. Delegates and members could take this up with their Local School Councils (LSCs) and Professional Problems Committees (PPCs). The Board and CTU would be working jointly to consider various models already being utilized in other school districts. (See TA 1 below.)

Reporter’s notes: The TA creates a new school position with this change, if those presently with those responsibilities, counselors or others currently doing the job of case management, no longer chose to do so. Case managers organize the special education (sped) teams as needed for the many and varied meetings and testing or interviews necessary for the start, implementation, and maintenance of students’ individualized education plans (IEPs). Depending on the number of sped students in a given school, this requires a lot of organizing work, particularly in the CPS system in which schools may only have social workers, nurses, psychologists, speech, occupational therapists, and other clinicians available once or twice a week. The open question is how that position will be funded at local school levels, already grievously-drained of resources.

2) Q: Questions and concerns came from the Hanson Park delegate related to the 7% pension pick-up, that the goal of a union should be to treat people the same. He also asked that exact salary charts be made available before membership voting. A: There was a general review of pensions (employer pick-up, employee pick-up, and benefits) as per state law, not CTU contract. (See TA 2 below.)

3) Q: A delegate called out the “two-tiered” pension system as divisive; as veteran teachers would continue being removed, new teachers would eventually exceed them in number and not fight for this to be continued any longer. A: Other two-tiered compensation examples in the workforce were pointed out as harmful to union solidarity, such as the Big Three autoworkers. Ours was not because same pay was arranged. In the future, we should be assured that our union negotiators would say, “We already dealt with that issue; we’re not going back; we won’t let you.” There was no guarantee of any pay or benefits. (See TA 3 below.)

4) Q: The delegate from Chicago Vocational Career Academy (CVCA) reported that Network 12 was right now telling them they had to change Gradebook. She wanted to know about what they could do about that, based on the contract. She also requested that CVCA be considered for one of the "Community schools" being formed, due to their cuts and dire need for wrap-around services. A: Regarding Gradebook, CTU leadership knew about the “crushing paperwork” members were facing; they negotiated on that issue for hours and hours, but that was not put into the contract. It was generally recommended for all members to file grievances, organize parents, and consider job actions – for example, the sped task force was considering a boycott of paperwork. Re the question of being considered for one of the "Community schools", those schools were going to be selected based on need, and this would pertain to schools already strong with involvement of community groups. (See TA 4 below.)

Reporter’s notes: The delegate from CVCA brought up a HUGE number of concerns with her two short questions: first re classroom autonomy issues; and second for the resources that will be going into the newly-created community schools.

PROFESSIONAL AUTONOMY: There is widespread agreement that the current 44-21 language did little to nothing in practice to limit paperwork. Gradebook refers to the what, where, when, and how of teachers entering students’ grades. Administrators and/or Networks (one blames the other), neither teaching in the city’s classrooms, have been relentlessly increasing and micromanaging this and all other aspects of teachers’ classroom autonomy since CTU members walked back in from the 2012 Strike.

The micromanaging is presently at an insane, soul-crushing level. Below is the text of the TA related to other aspects of the life-sucking micromanagement continuing within CPS. Basically, the TA language in this regard is the following: Forward these and all related iterations to BOE/CTU joint committees. This is the same kind of language utilized in many other parts of the TA as well.

Anyone looking for relief related to the professional autonomy of lesson planning, assessment, and grading will not find much if anything to effectively counter what teachers are experiencing in their classrooms in real time across the city. See specific and related TA areas re lesson plans, assessment, and grading below

(TA 5; TA 6; TA 7; TA 8): COMMUNITY SCHOOLS, reporter’s notes: Judging by way CTU leadership abruptly rejected the idea of CVCA (and apparently any other school) having any chance of being considered for this new community school designation, it appears that already-connected community groups working with CTU and their already, thusly-connected schools might already be on a ready-made short list for the wrap-around services only those schools will be receiving. Also troubling: the words “funding for external agencies and/or in-kind donations…” Union questions here revolve around the concept of CTU leadership working with BOE to secure resources for jobs that might not be CTU dues-paying union jobs, at possible threat to those jobs? The following is the related TA section. (See TA 9 below.)

5) The delegate from Cather Elementary School brought up the issue of the raises in the TA. This he calculated as .4% over the four years of the TA, considering furlough days as well as healthcare increases.

“Why would we take such a pittance?”

A second question asked for the language we were told was already agreed-upon with the Board for REACH evaluations related to ratings of developing. A: We hear you, but money was the hardest thing at the negotiating table. We stopped cuts and have a modest COLA (cost of living adjustment). Re REACH: We got the 2 developing ratings = unsatisfactory language removed, as well as adding provisions for grieving developing ratings. Public opinion would not be with us for pay raises or evaluation complaints as reasons to strike. TA: Salary data regarding pay increases is as follows: 2015-16 0%; 2016-17 0%; 2017-18 2.0%; 2018-19 2.5%. [See “Worst contract in CTU history? Consider the actual numbers of teacher salaries since the beginning of the 21st Century...” by George Schmitt, October 12, 2016.]

TA: Language related to and thusly legitimizing furlough days is as follows: “47-[NEW]. Nothing in this agreement shall impair or diminish the BOARD’s right to implement unpaid furlough or shutdown days for employees.”

Reporter’s notes: During this time, at certain points there was a semi-hot exchange between the delegate and Jesse Sharkey. At one point the delegate said, “I liked it better when we fought.”

In fact, the HOD body went loudly two ways after that comment. Jesse spoke about CTU’s “continuous state of mobilization” over the lengthy course of negotiations for this TA. The members of the HOD were repeatedly since January of 2016 told by CTU leadership that BOE agreed to new cut-off scores on evaluations. So, how was that not in the TA? Many teachers are asking about this. REACH is a whole ‘nother ballgame of BOE abuses. [See “REACH Grief!” August 18, 2015, back issue of Substance, by Susan Zupan, for a satirical reporting of what many teachers have experienced in actuality.]

The issues related to the TA’s increases in healthcare costs, with consideration for proposed plan changes, are still being sorted out and debated. However, data indicates that many members will experience significant increases in healthcare costs over the course of this contract, costs that will in some cases greatly lower the “modest COLA” regarding pay raises CTU leadership, the BBT, and now the HOD all accepted with this TA. Less than the delegate’s raise calculation of .4%, might CTU members actually experience an overall pay cut under the TA?

6) Dave White, delegate of Alcott School, started by repeating Karen Lewis’s oft repeated words about “protecting children” and “the soul of education.” Yet we experienced $30 million in cuts to Special Education, which was a strike issue?! He asked about the new contract language related to class sizes for K-2. How would that be funded?

During this exchange with Jesse Sharkey, someone yelled out, “What’s the maximum number!?” A: Article 28 (class sizes) was not enforceable [as per state law regarding bargaining rights of CPS employees]. There were over 180 kindergarten through 2nd grade classrooms in CPS with over 31 students. There were principals who were bumping these classroom sizes in order to increase their numbers for Student-Based Budgeting (SBB) financial allocations. PSRPs who were displaced (this group of employees being referred to by CTU leadership as an “endangered species” at a previous HOD meeting) would now be eligible for the TA’s newly-required teacher assistant positions for such classrooms. There was money allocated in the TA for this purpose. (See TA 10 and TA


Reporter’s notes: "Student Based Budgeting" (SBB) refers to the Rahm Emanuel/Forest Claypool funding of schools via a CPS-determined amount per student in enrollment. Previously, CPS funded positions in schools. Presently, CPS gives the determined amount per student to schools. This year, the situation was made even worse with the addition of special education funding added into this funding formula.

The result has been massive targeting (one way or another) for removal of more expensive veteran teachers, and especially those with higher degrees. The very serious question not addressed and probably made worse in the TA is the issue of maximum class sizes. The TA language validates “32 or more students” compared to the previous Contract Agreement, enforceable or not, which listed maximums of 28 students for kindergarten and primary grade classrooms. After the Q & A was completed, the HOD meeting officially began. Following speeches touting the TA along with other information presented by the officers, the following were the points made by the four delegates who were able to officially speak against the TA before the full HOD, because they made it to the mics in that first 15 minutes of debate:

After the pre-meeting questions and answers, the motion to recommend the TA was before the House of Delegates and the actual debate began.

1) Sarah Chambers, delegate from Saucedo Academy, member of the BBT and CORE Steering Committee, reported that her school polled at 89% against. Under this TA, in three years our lives would be harder due to continuing: cuts, SBB, and increases in class sizes. The TA did not offer any workload relief. [Ineffective] language for paperwork and sped was the same as before. WE NEED WORKLOAD RELIEF! There is NOTHING for MTSS! This keeps everything as it already is. Do not underestimate our power! After the TA was agreed upon by the BBT, the mayor released $175 in TIF money, and we only got half! Under Debbie Lynch, teachers sent the TA back and got more. [Reporter’s note: MTSS refers to the latest acronym (have there been five in the last five years?) representing CPS’s micromanagement insanity continuing each year to make it finally nearly impossible for schools to start the process of having students tested for possible sped services.]

2) The delegate from Hancock High School appreciated the work of the BBT but would be voting NO. Because speakers in favor of the TA used the usual speechifying about “unity” and “cutting off our nose to spite our face” and such, the Hancock delegate said that he loved his union, too, and the two-tiered pension system would weaken us. He said that pensions are a hotbed issue that would be here again and again. In 8-12 years, new teachers would not strike for the 7% pick-up, weakening the 75% strike threshold [as per state law for CTU only].

3) Natasha Carlsen understood all the talk about contract agreements “not being perfect,” but we were in CPS, we know we are not in la-la-land. Our union and its contract language were the last line of defense for what workers wanted and needed, and [especially] compared to what we were promised. SBB was dividing us, making veterans expensive push-outs. This TA did not meet stated goals for fairness to students or social justice for the rank and file. We voted to strike two times at 95%?! Her school polled at 95% against. For sped teachers, the language is the same. There would be NO RELIEF. It does not divide us to vote against vague and not enforceable language.

4) In contrast to a delegate from Senn High School who spoke in favor of the TA, while experiencing herself the impacts of SBB with the elimination of her full-time position as librarian changed to half-time and half-time ESL (English as a Second Language), the delegate from Simeon Academy agreed with Sarah Chambers. The delegate also brought up the low salary increases, the 7% pension pick-up being a continuing issue ahead, and healthcare increases with less choice. Appendix E decreased choices from five plans to three (making the cheapest HMO plan more expensive while keeping the most expensive PPO), with greater out-of-pocket costs. A teacher at Simeon killed herself over the course of the last contract’s HMO due to changes in her treatment. We were in a war of attrition. 2012 was not a gain or loss. This TA is a LOSS. For each member we lose, we lose members. [Reporter’s note: Members should please look over Appendix E for the changes to healthcare plans.]

Only one further speaker, a displaced teacher presently subbing, was able to speak against the TA after the start of the second 15-minute debate allocation.

This was before the discussion/debate was shut down with the calling of the question by Michelle Gunderson.

The final speaker against the contract referred to teachers’ evaluations continuing to unfairly rely on students’ reading frustration levels as opposed to students’ instructional levels. By standing vote, in which delegates are asked to stand while the sergeants-at-arms count the numbers, the HOD closed debate by a vote of 422 to 105. [This reporter as delegate voted to continue debate.] By another standing vote, the HOD then voted to pass the TA to the membership by a vote of 328 to 153. [This reporter voted against the motion. Personally, I will vote against the TA. As delegate I voted as indicated by my school polling at 80% against the TA.]

The following are the Tentative Agreement sections noted above.

TA 1: “Amend Art 20-2 as follows: By no later than SY 2017-18, the Board shall no longer require school counselors, related service providers and special educators to perform case management responsibilities. The Board and Union shall form a committee to recommend to the CEO how to implement this provision.”

TA 2: “All bargaining unit employees hired on or before December 31, 2016 shall maintain the pension pick-up without change per the predecessor agreement.” And, “Teachers and PSRPs hired on or after January 1, 2017 will not receive pension pick-up.”

TA 3: (See above for Q2.) Add: “Salary schedules for teachers and PSRPs hired on or after January 1, 2017 shall be created which shall phase-in increases to base salary over current salary of 3.5% effective January and an additional 3.5% effective July 2, 2017.”

TA 4: “44-21. Limitations on Paperwork. If the BOARD, principals or other administrators require bargaining unit employees to complete any additional paperwork on a regular basis that is not required by law, whether the work is by paper or electronic, the BOARD shall reasonably mitigate the additional paperwork increase by eliminating other clerical work or paperwork for bargaining unit employees. January 29, 2016 TAs Against 2012-2015 CBA Page 117 The Union will identify up 30 items of paperwork that teachers are currently mandated to complete that they believe are redundant, obsolete or better (more efficiently and effectively) accomplished by other means. The Board will discuss those items with CTU and on those paperwork requirements on which there is agreement that the items are redundant, obsolete or better accomplished by other means, the Board shall eliminate that requirement promptly.”

TA 5: “44-30. Lesson Planning. The development and use of lesson plans is a professional responsibility vital to effective teaching. Principals and/or network administrators shall not require that teachers submit separate unit and lesson plans. Special Education teachers who are working in a co-teaching setting or not providing direct instruction shall supplement the general education teacher’s unit or lesson plan, and shall not be required to submit a separate unit or lesson plan. The organization, format, notation and other physical aspects of and the instructional strategies to be used for the lesson plan are within the teacher’s discretion. Principals or supervisors may require that teachers include certain categories for in instructional plans (i.e., content standards, student learning outcomes, methods of assessment, learning tasks and materials, grade‐ appropriate levels of texts, differentiated instructional strategies that meet the needs of the individual students in the class) but may not require a particular format or organization, except when required by accrediting agencies of particular programs that schools are implementing (e.g., International Baccalaureate). Common instructional plans for courses or subjects may be developed and used by grade bands or subject departments. Teachers shall have reasonable time to submit lesson plans or supplements.certain elements for lesson plans, but may not require a particular format or organization, except as a part of a remediation program for teachers who receive unsatisfactory ratings. To accommodate teachers and PSRPs who teach multiple levels or subjects, redundancy shall be reduced to the extent possible and lesson plans may be developed by grade level or subject departments. If a teacher or PSRP uses a template produced by the BOARD or a network, area or other geographic subdivision, such template shall conform to Article 44-21 to reduce the load of paperwork.”

TA 6: “44-[NEW] January 29, 2016 TAs Against 2012-2015 CBA Page 119 The Board and the Union will create ad hoc professional problems committees (PPC) to address concerns within administrative units other than schools on an as needed basis and upon request of the Union. The unit PPC will be formed to share information relevant to the entire unit and to discuss and resolve unit-wide problems, including but not limited to issues of excessive paperwork. The unit chief shall be a member of an ad hoc unit PPC. The Union shall have five members on a unit PPC. The Union shall designate a Union chair, who shall be responsible for developing agendas and communicating with the unit chief. When a unit PPC is created, the PPC shall meet monthly or more often if the Union chair and the unit chief agree until the issues that led to its creation are resolved. The unit chief may have the assistance of principals and network staff in conducting the meeting.”

TA 7: “ 44-[NEW] Assessments. _____-1. Required Assessments. No later than June 30th of each year (or as soon as practicable after ISBE has published the state assessment calendar), the Board shall publish an assessment calendar for the subsequent school year, which shall consist of assessments mandated by the district for REACH, required to meet the mandates of state or federal laws and regulations, and mandated by a program (i.e., IB or any program that requires a test for student credit or program accreditation). ____-2. Additional Assessments. (i) Schools shall determine assessments to be administered in conjunction with the development of the School Improvement Plan for Advancing Academic Achievement (SIPAA) which is currently known as the Continuous Improvement Work Plan (CIWP). Each year in the spring, Teachers and the Principal will collaborate to develop a recommended plan for additional assessments, if any, per grade band or content area/department. Prior to voting, the CEO or designee, may review and revised the proposed assessments plan, which shall be presented to and discussed with the school faculty. Teachers and the principal will then vote on the adoption of the plan, which shall be adopted by majority vote. If the plan is not adopted, and the faculty and/or the CEO or designee cannot agree on an alternative plan, the Union or the network chief CEO or designee may submit the matter for resolution at strategic bargaining. The assessment decision will be included in the school’s PD plan and reviewed by the district. ___-3.The District shall provide a way that staff can submit any issues and/or concerns (e.g. dedicated assessment email box) to Central Office January 29, 2016 TAs Against 2012-2015 CBA Page 120 in a confidential manner. CPS and CTU will meet quarterly to review their concerns and/or issues that are submitted.”

TA 8: “ 44-[NEW]. Grading Practices. ____-1. Teachers Grading Responsibilities. Teachers are responsible for regularly assessing student progress, notifying students and parents of student progress and for determining students’ grades in the subject area or activity for which the teacher is responsible. Teachers shall exercise their independent professional judgment in developing their grading practices. They shall determine the number, type, weighting and frequency of student assignments and tests or other assessments that are used to determine individual course grades. In making that determination, Teachers shall follow the grading guidelines established in ___-2 and district grading policies on grade changes, grade point averages and grade band values in accordance with Article ___-2, Teachers’ grading practices must be published at the beginning of the course and must be clear to students, parents, administration and staff. ____-2. Grading Practice Guidelines. No later than ____________________________, CPS and CTU shall form a joint task force of 10 educators (five appointed by CPS and five appointed by CTU) to develop CPS professional standards and guidelines for teacher grading practices, e.g., recommended frequency and sequencing of assessment, number of assessments per quarter etc. These grading practice guidelines shall require a coherent approach to grading practices within schools, grade bands and content teams, the use of CPS electronic parent portal “Gradebook” or other electronic system for housing student grades and notifying students and parents of assignments, assessment and grades. The taskforce shall develop the guidelines by consensus to the extent possible and, where not possible, by majority vote of the taskforce members. The taskforce shall issue guidelines as soon as practicable, but in no event later than July 15, 2016, which principals, evaluators and network administrators shall use to guide and assess teachers’ grading practices.”

TA 9: “12-2. Community Schools. As part of the partnership required by the School Code, the Board shall obtain funding from external agencies and/or in-kind donations to fund between 20 and 55 community schools. Said funding or in-kind donations shall have a value of a minimum of $500,000 per school annually, which amounts are not to be commingled with district or school funds. January 29, 2016 TAs Against 2012-2015 CBA Page 34 The Board and the Union agree to form a twenty person task force, with 10 persons appointed by each, to effectuate, monitor and implement the following initiatives with respect to these community schools: o An agreed process to select the schools o Consultation with LSC, principals and community members o Program elements may include, without limitation: Medical or mental health services available to the school community The expansion of after-school programs The expansion of facility use for students or the school community Social-emotional supports/trauma interventions Parent mentor and home visit program Restorative Justice Coordinator and professional development for parents, students and staff Clinical services and community programming STLS coordinator, homelessness services, truancy supports, food pantry o Coordination of City and Park District services.”

TA 10: “… a teacher assistant or instructor assistant will be assigned to kindergarten to second grade classrooms that have 32 or more students enrolled on 10th day. The teacher assistant or instructor assistant shall assist in core instruction and may be shared with more than one classroom, provided the assistant is present for all instruction. The Board will implement this provision for the second semester of the 2016-17 school year.” TA 11: “28.4 Class Size Supervisory Committee: Increase funding to $7 million each fiscal year of the Agreement (comprised of new $1 million budget, plus $6 million district contribution for over-enrolled kindergarten to 2nd grade classes).”


October 23, 2016 at 5:32 PM

By: Susan Hickey, LCSW

TA does nothing for clinicians

I am going to say that this tentative agreement does NOTHING for clinicians. I sent this out to clinicians last week:

Hi everyone,

I am sending you my thoughts of the tentative agreement that the House of Delegates have voted on 10/19 to ratify. You will be able to vote on it next week- Thursday, 10/27 or Friday 10/28. You should get a 'golden ticket' in the mail (if CTU has your right address). For those of you who do not get it, please bring a pay stub that will show you have paid CTU dues. I know that I will not be affected by this contract as I have retired but still feel strongly that clinicians need to have information to make a decision. I have attached a scanned copy of the agreement as of 10/19. It shows those parts of the old agreement that were changed or new articles that were added. In early September, I was removed from the Big Bargaining Team and was not able to challenge the lack of strong provisions for clinicians although I did vote down the January 2016 agreement which was much worse that the one you are going to vote on next week. Emily Penn, Kirstie Shanley and Christa Lohman did a great job advocating for you. CTU did not replace the nurse that was on the original bargaining team so there was no voice to discuss the privatization going on with nursing among other issues.

On Tuesday, 10/18, the Clinicians Steering Committee met with Karen Lewis, Jesse Sharkey and others from CTU to ask questions about how this agreement affect clinicians. There are some important points that you need to know that pertain to you.

1. We asked about the privatization of clinicians and were told that the Board refused to add safeguards for those groups that already have RCM and other private agencies they are staffing in schools. There have been HSNs, LPNs, OTs that we know of that this has occurred. The provision in the agreement to protect CSNs is not strong enough. There is a strong concern that this practice could be extended to all groups that CPS feel they cannot fill the positions.

2. There is no provision that puts limits on clinician workload/casework. The Board refused to discuss putting anything in the contract to ease the ridiculous load you have. There is a provision in Article 20 that states CPS cannot force you to do anything that is contrary to your clinical license. Also, the case management duties that is now removed from counselors are not be be put on you. Let CTU and your delegates know if that happens! The workload committee will be meeting with the Board to deal with the issue but in previous years, there was no agreement about the changes made by ODLSS.

3. Clinicians will not get religious holidays and the Board refused to add the provision for clinicians and para- professionals. Only school teachers are allowed. CTU told us it is Board policy and cannot be added to the contract. This is a blatant form of discrimination and will be showing itself in the next pay check! Contact John Kugler or call CTU about this! You are allowed to use a PB day but there will be no use of the religious holidays which are still showing up on the pay stub!

Please go to the CTU website for any clarifications of pension, the early retirement incentive among other things. Please consider voting NO for this agreement. If it does not pass, this will mean CTU will go back to the bargaining table. The threat of a strike, withdrawing of labor, is there to get a better deal. You must live with this contract. CTU leadership feels strongly that this is the best offer they can get. My fears is that clinicians have very little protections. Please share this to those who did not get it.

Stay strong and stay together,


October 24, 2016 at 2:42 PM

By: Ed Hershey

Names of "No" delegates

Amy Philips was the Hancock delegate,

the Simeon delegate's name was Rovana.

I agreed with both of them and voted "No" (along with our other Lindblom delegate)

October 25, 2016 at 3:42 AM

By: George Schmidt

Sellout of the clinicians complete... even with a 'clinician' among the officers!

As Susan Hickey points out in the comment above, the leadership sold out the clinicians completely. For the president and vice president of a union to sit with a group of the union's dues paying (more than $1,100 per year!) members and explain the boss's rationale for the sell out is absurd. The duty of the union's leaders is to represent the union's members -- NOT to explain the Boss to the members. This is but a small part of the overall sellout -- as I've already reported, the worst contract since the Chicago Teachers Union began serious collective bargaining in the 1960s! -- and each part needs to be articulate this completely.

But it is the job of the union's leaders to serve and protect the members -- AGAINST the boss. Not to bring the boss's excuses in front of those whose union dues pay their salaries.

This is all the more disturbing in 2016, since in May 2016 the Chicago Teachers Union, for the first time, added a "clinician" to the union's four officers. Supposedly that person, Maria Moreno, was going to make sure that the union's clinician members were not sold out.

We still have the right to demand what happened with that.

October 25, 2016 at 12:17 PM

By: Therese Boyle

Clinicians Sold Out

Members of the Clinician Steering Committee met with CTU leadership last week on 10/18/16. I left the meeting feeling betrayed by my union. It was an emotional experience for me; both as a delegate and as a 33 year CTU member. CTU belongs to all of us and should represent all of us. It is hard for me to explain what happened to the clinicians whose concerns I represent. I cannot support this TA. Not only does the TA abandon clinicians - there are too many other concerns with this agreement as proposed.

Add your own comment (all fields are necessary)

Substance readers:

You must give your first name and last name under "Name" when you post a comment at We are not operating a blog and do not allow anonymous or pseudonymous comments. Our readers deserve to know who is commenting, just as they deserve to know the source of our news reports and analysis.

Please respect this, and also provide us with an accurate e-mail address.

Thank you,

The Editors of Substance

Your Name

Your Email

What's your comment about?

Your Comment

Please answer this to prove you're not a robot:

4 + 5 =