Board Agenda for August 22, 2012 meeting includes scab schools plan, despite illegality

During the past month, principals, lunchroom supervisors and other Board workers have been reporting to Substance and the Chicago Teachers Union that the Board of Education’s administrative officials have been planning something called either the “100 Schools Plan” or the “150 Schools Plan.” Basically, the rumors said, Rahm Emanuel’s Board of Education was planning the most provocative publicity stunt yet when teachers go on strike, by claiming it was opening schools “for the sake of the children”, even though there will not be enough certified teachers in any building to hold classes. The cynical attempt to pit poor students and parents against striking school workers is not unprecedented in Chicago, but has not been used in more than 35 years.

The Board revealed its provocation against the union and the majority of parents and students with the publication on the morning of August 20, 2012 of the agenda for the August 22 meeting of the Board of Education. A Board Report is scheduled to be on the agenda on August 22 —although the Board Report outlining the plan is still a secret.

According to the Agenda for the Board meeting, a secret agenda item, Board Report 12-0822-RS10, “Resolution Authorizing the Development and Implementation of a Plan to Provide Student and Family Support in the Event the Chicago Teachers Union Chooses to Strike”, will not be available to the public until Wednesday, despite the clear requirement of the Illinois Open Meetings Act that the agenda items be public 48 hours prior to the meeting.

“Note: Board Report will be available on August 22, 2012” the Board agenda reads.

Whether the agenda item is legal either under the Illinois Open Meetings Act or under the Illinois Education Labor Relations Act will be subject to the litigation which is likely to follow, along with any Unfair Labor Practices charges that will grow out of the planned opening of what union members, including this reporter, are already calling “Scab Schools.”


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