All articles by Susan Zupan

'...the educational program at Taylor... suffered as a result of the insufficiency of substitute teachers. The students are the ones who have been denied the full benefit of the education...' Chicago Teachers Union wins huge arbitration victory regarding CPS obligation to provide cadre subs

“I believe the Board has no incentive to correct the insufficiency of substitute teachers unless it is subject to a monetary award for breaching the CBA,” the arbitrator rules. “In addition, let there be no . . .

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Karen Lewis and Beverly Woods August 19, 2014... Chicago Teachers Union president has advanced from 'thinking about' to 'seriously considering' a run for Mayor of Chicago

Billed as “A Conversation with Karen Lewis in the 19th Ward,” the conversational Q & A between Karen Lewis and TV news commentator Walter Jacobson started at approximately 6:30 PM on August 19, 2014 at . . .

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June 17 shooting near Taylor school challenges (among other things) concept of “Safe Passage” for school workers... Bullet whizzes through teacher's car on 'Safe Passage' route to mark the end of the school year... CPS stays it doesn't have to pay for repairs

Though not intentionally aimed at any Chicago Public Schools employees, the particular bullet that went through the teacher’s opened, back, driver’s side window, over her head, and out the front windshield did not make any . . .

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Kennedy King budget hearing July 16, 2014 show growing public resistance to CPS budget tales... Chicago in 2014 -- when one of the speakers asked kids at one elementary school what they wanted to be when they grew up, half of them answered 'Alive'

From approximately 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM on Wednesday, July 16, 2014, 31 speakers in an audience of approximately 100 signed up to mostly comment toward but also question Chicago Board of Education (BOE) Fiscal . . .

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'Participants may enter the waters knee high, waist high, or take the full plunge.'... Union Financial Secretary warming Up for the cold water of Lake Michigan... Polar Plunge to help Special Olympics

The 14th annual Polar Plunge Chicago is scheduled for Sunday, March 2, 2014. The fundraising from the event will benefit Special Olympics Chicago. There are close to 5,000 Special Olympic athletes in Chicago; this number . . .

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CTU Financial Secretary Kristine Mayle, a special ed teacher, will also be in Lake Michigan... Rahm to take Polar Plunge March 2 with teachers greeting him

What? 14th Annual Special Olympics Chicago (SOC) Polar Plunge
Where? North Avenue Beach located at 1603 N. Lakeshore Drive
When? Sunday, March 2, 2014 from 9:00 AM until 2:00 PM Who? CTU, Chicago's mayor, and . . .

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Freezing Chicago overnight campout for public education... Protesting against Chicago's expansion of charter schools

It’s 9:30 PM on Tuesday, January 21, 2014. The temperature is two degrees below zero. Do you know where a handful of representatives from the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) is? Outside, camping out in front . . .

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November 16 'Neighborhood schools fair' hopes to unite Chicago's community-based public schools and show parents and children that the nearest school is not 'bad' just because it isn't a 'magnet', 'STEM' thingy, or charter

Parents, teachers and community leaders asked that Chicagoans please set the date of November 16 in advance on your calendars for the city's first "Neighborhood Schools Fair" to be held at Clemente High School. The . . .

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Plaintiff's case presented from July 16 through July 17 in federal lawsuit against closings affecting special ed students

Three days of detailed testimony about the Chicago Board of Education's plans to close more than 50 of the city's real elementary schools took place in federal court in Chicago between July 16 and July . . .

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Defense case: How the Board of Education explained itself in federal court -- or didn't

The case presented by the Chicago Board of Education in defense of its actions took nearly two days July 17 and July 18, 2013. Although as of early August Judge Lee had not yet rendered . . .

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SWAN V. BYRD BENNETT IN FEDERAL COURT, PART ONE, THE CASE FOR THE SPECIAL ED CHILDREN: Lawsuit against school closings... Three days of testimony against the Chicago school closings based on the needs of special education students

Three days of detailed testimony about the Chicago Board of Education's plans to close more than 50 of the city's real elementary schools took place in federal court in Chicago between July 16 and July . . .

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“We need teachers in the hall! Not more money for DePaul!!” Protests before July 24 Board meeting... Protest over Cuts to Chicago Public Schools versus DePaul Taxpayer Giveaway

The Chicago Board of Education was not scheduled to begin its monthly meeting at its headquarters at 125 S. Clark St., but hundreds of protesters were working to highlight the Board's latest attacks on the . . .

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Winston, Anderson and others... 'Defense' (Board of Education) Witnesses for Federal Injunction Hearing... Board special ed chief's testimony in federal court sounded evasive to most observers in the courtroom

Dr. Markay Winston was called as the first witness for the defense in the hearing for Swan v. Byrd-Bennett (13-cv-03623) and McDaniel v. Board of Education City of Chicago (13-cv-03624) held before U.S. Judge John . . .

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South Side march against school closings begins May 18 with speeches, including Michael Brunson, an officer of the CTU

The South Side march against the planned closing of 53 Chicago public schools -- the largest single closing in any city in the history of the United States -- stepped off on the morning of . . .

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Michael Brunson at Jesse Owens school: Why we march... 'This is our city, our schools and our voice... This is a movement!'

Before the march began on Saturday, April 18, 2013, Michael Brunson, who had just been re-elected recording secretary of the Chicago Teachers Union the day before (by a landslide vote) gave the following speech to . . .

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'If you have any questions call 311,' CPS representatives told the audience... CPS hearing for the Songhai Elementary School closing -- with the students moved into (the previous closed and reconstituted) Curtis Elementary School -- highlighted by refusal of highly paid CPS executives to answer any

The first of the three “hearings” legally required per each Chicago Public School (CPS) action against elementary school communities across the city began today, April 6, 2013. The 2-lined heading on the handout for the . . .

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Lake Calumet school closings hearing tries to avoid the facts... In conjunction with 'Network' chiefs and outside consultants, CPS Communications Department tries to bar reporters from most of the hearing and suppress any press coverage

The “Far South Side Network Community Utilization Engagement Meetings” (as per the billing on a local flyer), otherwise known as the Lake Calumet public hearing for school closings due to CPS-concocted space "underutilization" claims, took . . .

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Englewood Gresham school closing hearing

The sixth Walton Family Foundation-sponsored Chicago Public Schools (CPS) school closing hearing -- due to supposed "underutilization" -- took place for the Englewood-Gresham Network on the afternoon of Saturday, February 2, 2013 at Kennedy King . . .

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ILTs another scam when real teachers and staff power is available

The article below was published The Jacobin and helps elucidate the entire fraud of "Instructional Leadership Teams" (ILTs) that is currently being fought against by the Chicago Teachers Union. As the Chicago Teachers Union leadership . . .

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Does Barbara Byrd Bennett push prayer as a response to CPS gang shootings?

While those of us in public education most probably fully agree with the sentiments of the CEO of the Chicago Public Schools regarding a most recent (yet far too often repeating) tragedy in the city . . .

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Subs lacking in CPS elementary schools and some suggestions for what to do about it ... Board cuts substitute teacher services across Chicago

Situation: There is and has been for quite some time a lack of substitute teachers being sent to cover absent teachers in CPS elementary schools. Those running the public schools, legislatively-directed from Springfield to be . . .

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'The idea that Byrd-Bennett’s new appointed commission will suddenly involve the community in a meaningful way is laughable...' PURE rejects Byrd-Bennett's 'closing next year' ploy

Within a few hours after Chicago's media began reporting that Chicago Public Schools Chief Executive Officer Barbara Byrd Bennett has proposed a "moratorium" on school closings beginning during the 2013 - 2014 school year — . . .

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Strike thoughts... We need to read and understand the entire contract and discuss what we have done, won, and lost

After I send this to CORE, I will probably forward a copy to each CTU member of my school's faculty and staff. Then it goes to Substance, for whom I have reported for a long . . .

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Florida educator running a gritty Chicago 'network'... Southeast side rally greets chieftain Harrison Peters in the shadow of what were once Chicago's steel mills

On Friday, September 14, 2012 a Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) rally and picnic was held in the park behind Jane Addams Elementary School located at 10810 South Avenue H on the southeast side of Chicago. . . .

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'Sabotage and destabilization'... Mid-Strike CTU Rally at Dyett High School

On September 12, 2012, one of three simultaneous Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) rallies held during the first week of the strike took place on the south side in front of Walter H. Dyett High School . . .

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AFT REPORTS: Teachers rallied in support of Detroit public schools... 'Strike Now!' or 'Negotiate Now!'

The American Federation of Teachers (AFT) held its biennial convention in Detroit, Michigan the weekend of July 27, 2012. Early that Friday afternoon, five buses left the COBO Center to attend a protest rally at . . .

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Educational issues at forefront in Hyde Park on a summer’s Wednesday night

Across the city, community partners and supporters of real public education with the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) are sponsoring public forums to discuss issues regarding the Chicago Public Schools (CPS), particularly how to provide Chicago . . .

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CORE convention kicks off on militant note as Labor Notes organizer reminds CTU leaders 'The whole world is watching...' the preparations for the Chicago School Strike of 2012

The Caucus of Rank and File Educators (CORE), a caucus within the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) held its fifth annual convention over the weekend on Friday and Saturday, August 17 and 18, 2012. The CORE . . .

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CPS BUDGET ANALYSIS: CPS Budget Through the Looking Glass... Three “interactive” lessons for uncovering misleading data on teachers via trips through the FY 2013 CPS budget looking glass

As a Chicago resident, Substance reporter, teacher, and taxpayer, I am confused about the information presented for teachers, students, and administrators in the recently unveiled Chicago Public Schools (CPS) Fiscal Year (FY) 2013 Proposed Budget. . . .

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Hundreds rally with the Chicago Teachers Union on July 25

Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) flyers presented the July 25 rally at the Board of Education as follows: “Budget cuts, an unfunded longer school day, 1000 layoffs and ‘redefinitions,’ endless unproven charters school $$$ and expansion, . . .

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SUBSCRIPT: 'Opposite-speak' translation of written communications from Bored of Education.... Brizard's language — 'Oppositespeak' — gets parsed and laughed out of town by teachers

Following the massive Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) rallies and march in downtown Chicago on May 23, 2012, those of us who work out in the schools received a letter via e-mail from Chief Executive Officer . . .

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Jesse Jackson Sr. challenges NATO costs to homeland social programs

At approximately 10:30 AM on Sunday, May 20, 2012, under a canopy tent in what would be the left-field section behind third base of the field surrounding the Petrillo Bandshell in downtown Chicago, a clear . . .

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Large 19th Ward meeting rejects CPS 'Longest School Day' as Brizard continues to duck parent anger and sends underlings who repeat talking points to defend his plans

Approximately 200 parents, teachers, and community members (overwhelmingly from Chicago’s 19th Ward) packed a 7:00 PM meeting held on Thursday, March 8, 2011 in the Morgan Park High School auditorium to challenge the "Longer School . . .

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Dyett closing hearing at CPS January 27, 2012

The hearing for the phased closing of Walter Dyett High School (located at 555 E. 51st Street) took place at the Chicago Board of Education located downtown at 125 S. Clark Street on Friday night, . . .

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More than 500 activists, unions hold candlelight vigil at Board of Education in prepration for massive protests against closings, turnarounds and charters at December 14 Board meeting... Organizers added to holiday cheer with Christmas Carols opposing the closings

On Tuesday, December 13, 2011, more than 500 teachers, parents, children and other supporters of real public education gathered from 6:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. in front of the downtown Chicago, central office location of . . .

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Parents see a 'Done Deal'... Board continues illegal 'parent' meetings with one at Wendell Smith, a school on the Hit List for a CPS turnaround

Wendell Smith Elementary School, located at 744 E. 103rd Street is presently the only school within in the new "Lake Calumet Network" to be slated for “school actions,” the latest term used to describe the . . .

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Is a CAC really a TAC in drag? CPS CAC 101: How to misrepresent CPS Lake Calumet and Rock Island Networks with a pre-fabricated CAC?

On Tuesday, December 20, 2011, Substance was informed of the Far South Side CAC meeting to be held that evening at 6:00 PM at the Metropolitan Family Services Calumet Region building located at 235 E. . . .

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'Stand Up Chicago! joins with 'Occupy Chicago' against corporate arrogance and greed... Thousands protest on Columbus Day in Chicago

Thousands of people fanned out across various locations in downtown Chicago as part of protests against Chicago's corporations and the ways in which the city is being destroyed by corporate rule and corporate greed. The . . .

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Can you smell a RA T? Crazy evaluation requirements spurting out from new 'Network' offices... Evaluation Checklist — 'Lake Calumet/Far South Side Networks/Opening Schools Expectations/2011'

Straight out of the old Chicago Public Schools (CPS) non-negotiable playbook from the previously-named "Areas" preceded by CPS’s previous-to-that-named "Regions," a new accountability checklist has been generated by Harrison A. Peters, the new Chief Area . . .

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West Side rejects CPS budget at tumultuous August 11 hearing at Westinghouse High School

Before the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) moderator could finish giving the audience her quick overview of the night’s schedule and public participation procedures, a woman burst in the back door to the Westinghouse High School . . .

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February 26 Chicago solidarity rally at State of Illinois building

If you drove by the Thompson Center, aka the State of Illinois Building, located at 100 W. Randolph in downtown Chicago at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 26, 2011, you would have seen maybe 150-200 . . .

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CORE Education Summit marks third year

The third annual CORE (Caucus of Rank and File Educators) Summit took place on Saturday, February 12, 2011. Registration took place in the lobby of King College Prep, located at 4445 South Drexel in Chicago. . . .

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'Save the American dream'... Rally in support of Wisconsin workers' protest at Illinois State Building February 26 in Chicago

If you drove by the Thompson Center, aka the State of Illinois Building, located at 100 W. Randolph in downtown Chicago at 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, February 26, 2011, you would have seen maybe 150-200 . . .

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CPS Public Hearing on New and Modifications to Charter Schools

Following the 5:00-7:00 p.m. Community Forum held in CPS Board Chambers, on Tuesday, January 19, 2011, CPS held a Public Hearing “regarding new charter schools/campuses and modifications to existing charter schools” from 7:00-9:00 p.m. There . . .

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2010 IFT CONVENTION: RESOLUTION REVOLUTION? (Part II)

The following is the second of a two-part summarization of the process and outcomes taking place regarding the 27 resolutions presented at the 2010 IFT Convention in St. Louis, Missouri held on the weekend of . . .

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Whittier Moms continue library work... "We're still here!"

On Sunday afternoon, October 10, 2010, I drove out to Whittier Elementary School for an update on the situation with the field house. Whittier Elementary School is located at 1900 W. 23rd Street. The field . . .

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SING ALONG WITH SUBSTANCE... 'Farmer Duncan has a plan...' EIEIO...

Over the recent October 17, 2010 weekend, CTU members elected as convention delegates attended the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) Convention in the beautiful city of St. Louis, Missouri. Yes, Missouri. IFT Conventions take place . . .

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Resolutions approved at IFT convention... Resolution Revolution, Part One

DEFINITION: resolution: 1. a formal expression of opinion or intention made, usually after voting, by a formal organization. 2. the act of resolving or determining, as upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, . . .

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Second budget hearing draws major crowd to Westinghouse High School August 18... Some charter supporters give lukewarm support to charters

The second CPS budget hearing on the 2010 – 2011 proposed budget was held at Westinghouse High School, 3301 W. Franklin, on Wednesday, August 18. The sign-in for speakers began at 6:00 p.m. Approximately 60 . . .

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Introduction of AFT delegate's job... A first look at the national union convention of 2010

Consider this article the "American Federation of Teachers (AFT) 2010 Convention Primer, Level 101: The Delegates’ Job – Approving of Constitutional Resolutions Pre-Selected by the Leaders". Author credit: By Susan L. Zupan, Rookie Convention Delegate, . . .

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AFT Convention Report, or 'AFT 102' ... Report from a committee meeting and a few important resolutions

[Editor's Note: As July moves towards August, many members of the Chicago Teachers Union delegation to the Seattle Convention of the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) that was held from July 7 through July 12 . . .

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Teachers protest before Board of Education’s July 28 meeting

More than 110 people, most of them teachers and members of the Chicago Teachers Union, protested in a spirit picket line outside the headquarters of the Chicago Board of Education an hour before the Board’s . . .

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Coalition holds press conference challenging CPS cuts, budget claims

Chicago Youth Initiating Change (CYIC), the Grassroots Educational Movement (GEM), and the Caucus for Rank and File Educators (CORE) co-sponsored a press conference on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 outside 125 S. Clark Street before the . . .

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J. N. Thorp next on CPS Hit List?... "Hands off Thorp!" meeting held in South Chicago

The recently formed neighborhood group called “Friends of Thorp” sponsored a real hearing on the evening of Thursday, September 24, 2009.

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) has sponsored public “hearings” across the city, in recent . . .

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How to defraud the public with New Schools nonsense... Lessons from Chicago's summer hearings

REPORT/COMMENTARY on Chicago Public Schools’ Summer 2009 REN 2010 Hearings et al. By Susan Zupan

As part of the ongoing campaign to expand what was "Renaissance 2010" to 2015 and beyond, the Chicago Board . . .

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