Also, we welcome plans from CPS and the mayor to boost educator diversity. It's something our union and partners like @GrowYourOwnIL have been working on for years.

But before that, CPS needs to care for, respect and nurture the Black and Brown teachers we already have. #thread
Black teachers were 41 percent of the CPS workforce in 2000, according to Illinois State Board of Ed Report Card data. That percentage had plummeted to 21 percent by 2019.
Nearly a quarter of the schools in our district, in a city that is 1/3 Black, have one or no Black teachers. In 2001, there were about 10 CPS schools with no Black teachers. Now there are more than 60. What does that say about how we value Black and BIPOC students and educators?
This is part of a national crisis around the push out of Black educators, and in Chicago, part of what VP @stacydavisgates has called the "Negro Removal Act"...removing Black educators, when, due to crime, poverty and the lack of affordable housing, our students need them most.
So what happened? Mayoral control of schools, which has been an abject failure. And student-based budgeting, which has caused a death spiral in some areas as funding and students went to better-resourced schools in neighborhoods with increases in population and housing costs.
For decades, boards of education handpicked by the mayor, and racist CPS policies contributed mightily to disinvestment in Black school communities, and favored privatization that ignored efforts to attract—and protect—our Black and Brown educators.
But as we stated, "to truly make this initiative a success, CPS must value both incoming and veteran educators of color in its buildings, and make schools hospitable places to learn and grow in professional, anti-racist communities." Keyword: anti-racist.…
CPS must also work with stakeholders who have done this work for years, and commit to "eradicating policies that have stripped our schools of Black and Brown educators: charter proliferation, school closings, punitive teacher evaluation and high-stakes entry programs."
Illinois State University is a willing partner, but if we're truly talking about growing our own from Chicago's roots, and frontloading the need for diversity, let's tap into local pipelines that are anchors of communities, like Chicago State, NEIU and U.I.C.
And make CPS a place where Black and Brown educators are welcome. Our union is committed and a willing partner. There is Black and Brown leadership at high levels in all places. This can’t become yet another story about lofty promises that sounded good, but ultimately fell short. Image

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More from @CTULocal1

15 Oct
There's a lot wrong with the decisions CPS and the mayor make around our schools. It's hard to know where to begin sometimes. Perhaps the most glaring in this case is how this plan was hatched by district officials all by themselves. No educators, parents, students...nothing.
Tomorrow marks two weeks since an independent arbitrator ordered CPS to allow clerks, clerk assistants and tech coordinators to work remotely due to school buildings being unsafe. Since then, the district has done absolutely nothing to comply with the order except undermine it.
Illinois recorded 4,015 new coronavirus cases today, which is a single-day record. Today's 53 deaths are also the most in a day since late June. Every state surrounding Illinois is on the city's emergency coronavirus travel order.

We are still in the midst of a raging pandemic.
Read 10 tweets
1 Sep
CTU members returning to buildings are reporting dust, uncleaned spills, rodent droppings and a lack of PPE, hand sanitizer, signage, social distance markings and plexiglass. No way CPS would have been ready for 400,000+ people in schools next week.…
“It was obvious that my classroom was never ‘deep cleaned.’ For example, the students’ chairs still had crumbs and milk spills on them. The room was covered in a layer of dust.”
“[Custodians] were told last year ’10 minutes per room.’ They don’t have time for their regular duties, much less the enhanced cleaning protocol. Aramark won’t change anything. CPS won’t do anything either. I’m afraid I’ll die if we go back during COVID-19.”
Read 10 tweets
19 Aug
Seems like the "CtU nEeDs To WoRk WiTh CpS" narrative is becoming a thing." Y'all are funny. We'd love to have the entire city sit in on these convos and see what it's like to present ideas that work for educators, parents and students and have every one met with "No."
Here's some insight: CPS and the mayor are big on legality. Like, really big on it. They make safety and pedagogical decisions based on legal maneuvers, not best practices.
Their entire remote learning plan, and all of their expectations on what parents, students and educators should experience—in the midst of a pandemic—is basically a legal brief of what they can and cannot do legally. It isn’t based on educator, parent or student voice at all.
Read 5 tweets
19 Aug
Chicago is behind (again). What we see in Los Angeles is a burgeoning partnership between @UTLAnow and their district—a remote learning plan that recognizes that a) we are in a pandemic, and b) the social inequities that existed already have been exacerbated.
It isn't perfect, but it's an agreement.
We don't have that.
Read 12 tweets
27 Jul
In a CPS community meeting with officials, parents, teachers and community members today, one of our members posed the following question in the Q&A:

"Have you prepared statements for when the first student or teacher passes away due to exposure to the virus at school?" #thread
"Know that decisions you make are putting lives at stake. Teachers are NOT comfortable with your plan. Please, it is imperative we are engaged in SOLELY remote learning, not in-person instruction."
"It's easy for you to be socially distant at CPS HQ, but would you implement this same plan if you were going to be in-class with me teaching 9th graders in a school with 3,000 students?"
Read 7 tweets
18 Jul
As the nation reeled from the death of beloved civil rights activists John Lewis and the Rev. C.T. Vivian, we learned of the pepper-spraying and beating of a new generation of leaders for rallying against a despised public monument to white supremacy.
When a Chicago police officer knocked out the teeth of Black, female youth organizer Miracle Boyd on Friday night, the spirits of Lewis and Vivian were with her and her fellow protesters, who demanded the removal of a statue celebrating genocidal colonizer Christopher Columbus.
Miracle was a CPS student, @GKMC18 leader and advocate for her educators. She was among our best and brightest, who fought school closings and stood shoulder to shoulder with CTU members on picket lines. Headed to DePaul University in the fall, she is our hope, and our future.
Read 4 tweets

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