Thursday, August 31, 2006

This Is What Real Leadership Looks Like!

Yesterday (8/30/06) six members of the current CTU leadership visited Gage Park to talk about the overcrowding problem.

Their proposed solution? Fill out the form on overcrowded classes (each individual teacher - all 100 or so of us) and more or less in one month they might be able to grieve the situation.

When asked by the rank and file for any other ideas, they again said fill out the forms.

After they left, authentic leadership stood up. Debbie Lynch and other PACT members said let's hold an informational picket and invite the media. Why do this? To ensure that overcrowding on the southwest side did not become a one-day or one-week story (to see how this all started, visit this glorious post over at Andrew Russo's "District 299" blog).

Real leadership recognizes that this is a serious problem that will affect hundreds of children. The leadership of UPC advised filling out forms. The leadership of PACT made extraordinary efforts to hold a protest that involved teachers, parents, and students.

For those of you who have forgotten what real leadership looks like, watch this video of Debbie Lynch being interviewed by WBEZ during the protest. How can anyone not want people of this intelligence and passion to represent them? Remember, the election is this spring. Who do you want watching your back? The lame (lay down and roll over for Arnie) UPC or the resourceful and determined PACT? Watch the video and there can only be one answer to that question.

Gage Park Overcrowding Protest Video #1

Gage Park High School union delegate Ms. Steinmiller is interviewed by Channel 7 on the overcrowding issue.

Why This Blog Exists

Chicago Teachers Speak Out is a blog created by the members and supporters of the Proactive Teachers and School Employees Caucus of the Chicago Teachers Union.

We want this forum to be a place where teachers and other education professionals can come to discuss the news and issues that impact our schools and students.

We invite you to join us. Would you like authoring privileges so you can post to the blog? Send us an email by clicking here. You can post or comment anonymously if that is what you choose (we do retain the right to moderate the comments section and all posts for inappropriate language, etc.).

PACT, and by extension this blog, represent the small "d" democratic wing of the Chicago Teachers Union. We welcome all points of view. Think of this blog as a step towards making the voices of teachers throughout the city heard on issues they think are important.

Join in the conversation. Comment on a post. Become an author and create your own posts.

Let's take a step towards improving teaching, learning and the conditions under which they take place in every school throughout Chicago.

NPR Story on Gage Park Controversy

You can listen to National Public Radio's "Morning Edition" story on the firing of Principal McGreal by clicking here.

Good stuff.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Overcrowding on the Southwest Side

Concerned about school overcrowding? We are! Please join the teachers and staff of Gage Park High School Thursday, August 31 at 3:15 p.m. for an informational picket in front of the school. We are protesting the chronic and continuing over-crowding of our school and other schools on the southwest side. Our students are primarily low income and minority, with low graduation rates. They deserve the best we can give them. It's time to stand up and say enough is enough!

Gage Park is at 5630 S. Rockwell. Hope to see you there.
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