Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis released a statement Thursday evening about the expected layoffs of more than 2,000 school workers on Friday.
Once again, CPS has lied to parents, employees and the public about
keeping the new school-based budget cuts away from the classroom. On
Friday, CPS will reportedly lay off 1,074 teachers, 451
paraprofessionals and 550 other employees, on top of the nearly 850
professionals who lost their positions in June and the 550 probationary
appointed teachers (PATs) and 22 Title I teachers who were laid off in
May. The loss of these workers will have a direct impact on the quality
of instruction offered in our schools under the imposed ‘longer school
day.’ These cuts are unnecessary and shameful for a system that prides
itself on providing a high-quality education for our students.
is equally shameful that as CPS slashes school budgets, they have not
offered one sound recommendation to resolve their 'budget crisis' other
than attacking teachers, closing schools, disrupting communities and
vilifying parents. CPS can generate new revenue by closing corporate
loopholes, engaging the banks about toxic swaps, re-examining the city’s
TIF program, and supporting a financial transaction tax which could put
billions of dollars back into our schools. Once, again the most
vulnerable children are going to receive the least. This will impact
every single student in our district.
This also says much about
the district’s much-touted, but poorly executed, 'Longer School Day,' program which they have recently branded as a 'fuller day.' How can a
'full day' function without the appropriate staffing and funding levels
and when schools that lack books, toilet paper and other necessities?
These cuts will surely increase class sizes. What we have now is the
While the mayor is busy making multi-million dollar
stadium deals and the Illinois General Assembly is playing volleyball
with workers’ lives, our students are the ones suffering.
The CTU has obtained a CPS PowerPoint presentation that instructs principals on the school-based budgeting process.
It should be noted, their process identifies our schools as 'winners
and losers,' as principals are instructed to trim a minimum of 4 percent
from their budgets. Why is this school district describing any of our
schools in these terms? What game are they playing with the education of
our students and the careers of their educators? Who does CPS identify
as the 'winner,' in this process and who does it define as the 'loser,' and why?
As the CTU continues to lobby the Board of Education to
restore these jobs, remarkably CPS refuses to agree to a hiring freeze.
It makes no sense to hire new people as the district lays off veteran
teachers and paraprofessionals many of whom have excellent and superior
We were told employees can expect calls from their
principals early Friday. In the meantime, our members can check our
website for updates as we continue to advocate for the schools our
Check back with Progress Illinois for more on this developing story.