Thursday, May 11, 2017

Where is CTU President?

Who is the Chicago Teachers Union President Serving?
By Jim Vail

Why is Karen Lewis publicly defending a crook but not our star union activist on trial.

You know you're union president has a problem when she shows up for a hearing for the boss, and avoids making an appearance on behalf of the union's star activist that the new boss threatened to fire.

Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) President Karen Lewis attended former disgraced Chicago Public Schools (CPS) CEO Barbara Byrd Bennett's hearing when she was sentenced to 4 and a half years in the slammer for her corrupt ways.

The Sun-Times spotted her at the sentencing and asked her why she showed up. She answered rhetorically, 'why do you think?'

I guess it should be obvious to reporters that when the head of the public schools goes down in flames from corrupt deals while schools are closed because there's no money, if the boss asks the union to show support - you do it!

Well, we got's a problem here. 

How can Lewis show public support for Bennett who helped close a record 50 public schools, and not show up to Saucedo teacher Sarah Chambers rally to save her job. 

Chambers has been suspended due to her activism, many suspect.

So which side is the union president on, one may ask.

We know Lewis had some kind of a relationship with Bennett who helped to settle the strike. They worked together to develop a region of schools support rather than close them called OS4.

But the fact is Bennett ran the schools, was corrupt as hell and destroyed many union jobs and children's dreams when she closed 50 schools.

I tell you, the money is good at the top. While we replaced one corrupt union leadership that was drawing two pensions and giving their field officers $250 cell phone allowances and a company car to boot as the union finances plummeted, we see another one creeping up here.

Lewis, like her predecessor, is drawing two salaries - one as the head of the teachers union which may pay her roughly $150,000 per year, and another as an officer for the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) for maybe a cool $80,000. Add to that more money from the Chicago Teacher's Foundation for serving as a trustee (also in the thousands according to union sources).

Lewis and the union made a deal with the city to avoid a strike - even though they made the teachers vote numerous times to give them the right to strike - and they gave us a contract that veterans like George Schmidt of Substance call the worst ever.

No delegate asked her at the monthly House of Delegates meeting about why she attended Bennett's sentencing, but not Chamber's rally.

But now that the union is facing a deficit of its own, and as teachers get more and more demoralized, more questions should be directed to the top of our union which is supposed to defend teachers, not the bosses who gamble away our children's school resources at the casinos.

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