Pity the Poor Union

The Chicago Teacher’s Union, which is unhappy and feeling rushed.

Using the children its teachers claim to teach as hostages, the union has decided to continue its strike for more money, more job security, and less stringent individual teacher performance evaluation.  Of course, this leaves those children out of school and forces parents to lose income from taking time off from work or to incur additional child-care expenses to handle children who should be in school.  That doesn’t matter, though, to teachers whose salaries already are some 50% higher than those of the parents whose children they’re not teaching.  (On the other hand, what’s the downside for the kids, really?  This collection of teachers does poorly by the students: a 60% high school graduation rate, generally, and a 44% rate for black high schoolers.  Just 15% of fourth graders are proficient in reading.  Just 20% of the students are grade level proficient in math.)

But faced with a generous offer from the city to come back to work, the CTU declined even to vote on the offer over the weekend.

CTU President, Karen Lewis, said teachers wanted the opportunity to continue to discuss that offer.

Our members are not happy,

she said.

They want to know if there is anything more they can get,

she said.

They feel rushed,

!?  she said.

They want to squeeze more—as if their already failed performance should be rewarded.  Talk about not hurting (teachers’) self-esteem.  They feel rushed?  They always could come back to work and study the city’s offer at leisure.

In the meantime, the kids are suffering.  Or, maybe not so much.

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