Chicago Teachers Union President continues support for corporate agenda at 'Advance Illinois' breakfast for Arne Duncan
While nearly 100 people — most of them Chicago teachers and dues paying members of the 33,000-member Chicago Teachers Union — demonstrated against the continued privatization and other attacks on Chicago's public schools on the sidewalk outside, the CTU President, Marilyn Stewart, ate breakfast inside, smiled when she received a shout out from U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, tried to avoid being photographed by Substance, and ignored her own members or her role in providing critical support in the fact that the former 'Chief Executive Officer' is now U.S. Secretary of Education.
Seated two tables away from Bill Daley, brother of Mayor Richard M. Daley, Arne Duncan, and other corporate and governmental leaders of the group called "Advance Illinois," Stewart applauded with the rest of the audience as the corporate leaders of Chicago and their education reform colleagues promoted the agenda of an organization called "Advance Illinois" and, nationally, the agenda of Arne Duncan and the U.S. Department of Education.
Protests provide views of rank-and-file teachers
While Stewart and her colleagues from the Chicago Teachers Union's staff were eating breakfast and cheering Arne Duncan, dozens of Stewart's members were picketing and protesting against Duncan's corporate "school reform" and union-busting policies on the sidewalk outside the fancy hotel where Stewart was cheering Duncan.
Organized by CORE (the Caucus Of Rank-and-file Educators) and GEM (the Grassroots Education Movement), the protest against Arne Duncan and the policies endorsed by Advance Illinois drew nearly 100 people, most of them Chicago teachers and retired teachers, while corporate and governmental leaders were listening to Duncan one story below their feet.