Another masterpiece of Orwell in Chicago — Scab Centers are part of the 'Children First' plan... CPS to challenge union strike by opening 145 scab centers... 'Hungry children' and 'needy seniors' ploys go back to the 1960s

By the end of the day on August 30, 2012, the Chicago Board of Education had announced the outlines of both its propaganda attack on the striking Chicago Teachers Union and its hopes of opening 145 sites for what union teachers are calling "scab centers." Assisted by Astroturf groups like "Stand for Children," the Board began promoting its scab centers by the time of the evening news shows on August 30.

One of the ironies of the current Board contingency plan (in addition to the fact that it comes at great expense at a time when CPS claims to be broke) is that the song is the same one that CPS began singing in the 1960s, when the Chicago Teachers Union first went on strike. A new video — CTU Strikes 1969 - 1987 — produced by CORE and featuring veteran teachers who helped organize and lead the strikes between 1969 and 1987 (including this reporter) discusses how every time there was a strike the Board of Education made the same claims as they are making, a half century after the first strike. in 2012. The URL for the CORE/Labor Beat video is:

The following is the CPS announcement, taken from the CPS website on August 31, 2012. Additional information, including the names of the schools to be used as scab centers, will be published by Substance as the information becomes publicly available.

The seven members of the Chicago Board of Education, after proclaiming that they are facing a huge budget "deficit", voted at their August 22, 2012 meeting (above) to approve a $25 million "contingency plan" to establish scab centers across the city in the event of a strike. Previously, the Board had also approved paying the highest salaries in history to outsiders (who claim they are "educators") like the recently hired "Chief Education Officer" Barbara Byrd-Bennett (imported from Detroit) and "Chief Executive Officer" Jean-Clause Brizard (right foreground; imported from Rochester New York). None of the top "education" officials in Chicago has any Chicago teaching or principal experience, and most do not have valid Illinois teaching or administrative licenses. The seven Board members (including Penny Pritzker, rear left above) and Rodrigo Sierra (rear right above) were appointed in May 2011 by Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt. CPS Children First Plan to Provide Students with Essential Services in the Event of CTU Strike. How students would be directly impacted by a strike:

 Instruction. Students would not have access to instruction.

 Sports. Varsity games and practices would be cancelled, impacting the approximately 11,000 high school students who play fall sports, including: Football, Soccer, Swimming and Diving, Cross Country, Golf, Softball, Tennis and Volleyball; in some sports, such as Football, many student athletes could be shut out from participating in playoff and championship games.

 Nutrition. More than 400,000 daily hot breakfasts and lunches would not be served to students who need them. (84 percent of students, or more than 338,000 kids, qualify for the CPS free and reduced lunch program).

 High School Seniors. Seniors applying to college could have key elements of their admissions process delayed—the sending of their transcripts, ACT scores and teacher recommendations.

 Assessments. 20,000 high school juniors could miss practice tests for the ACT, and students in programs like International Baccalaureate (IB) could miss key coursework needed to prepare for exams.

In the event the CTU chooses to strike, CPS is committed to doing everything possible to provide students with essential services, including:

 Keep open approximately 145 Children First Sites from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. o Sites are selected based on the size and location of the building, with preference given to those

with strong leadership, air conditioning, a gym and cafeteria, computer labs and proximity to

public transportation. o While academic instruction will not be provided, students will participate in positive activities to

keep them engaged. Examples include: arts, sports, journaling, independent reading and

writing, puzzles and computer-based programs. o Elementary and high school students will attend separate designated facilities

 Staff Children First sites with principals and assistant principals, as well as Central Office employees, parent volunteers and other non-CTU staff. Organizations will be invited to submit a Request for Proposal to help staff schools and provide non-instructional programming.

o Staff-to-student ratio will be capped at 25 to 1. o Security-to-student ratio will be capped at 100 to 1 to ensure the safety of all students o All supervising staff will have completed a background check.

 Provide daily nutrition services to all students attending a Children First Site, including breakfast and lunch.

o Students will receive a cold breakfast and cold lunch that meet USDA requirements.  Partner with City Sister Agencies, community and faith organizations and other external partners to

provide additional options for families and children. Examples include: o Extending 70-80 Chicago Park District summer camps, and welcoming students at 79 Chicago

Public Libraries. o Working with the Chicago Transit Authority and Chicago Police and Fire Departments to ensure

safety and provide additional services.

In the coming days additional information and details will be made available as needed, including site locations and resources for families.

 Parents will be able to call 773-553-1000, visit or the general website at  In the event of a strike, parents will be encouraged to register their child online at a Children First Site

closest to their home  CPS will provide a resource guide with free online educational tools, materials and resources for


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