Memo to Chicago School Board: Stop Violating Teachers’ Due Process Rights

Tenure Rights Restored in Chicago

03/29/2011 from the CTU web site

Teachers won an important battle in the war for quality schools today. The right for teachers to due process in terminations–tenure–has been restored. President Lewis urged CPS to take this opportunity to begin building trust with its teachers and PSRPs by implementing a fair recall policy immediately as ordered by the court today. CPS fired 1,300 teachers and 500 PSRPs last summer.

“We hope that the nation is watching,” said President Lewis.  “The concerted efforts in Wisconsin, Florida, Indiana and here in Illinois to turn teaching into a low-wage, high-turnover job cheats students and only serves business interests that want education on the cheap.   Experience counts and we must value the expert knowledge that comes with that experience once again.  All students deserve the most highly-qualified, experienced teachers available.”

Today’s decision upholds the October ruling by the U.S. District Court which ordered the Board to:

(1) rescind the discharge of tenured teachers, giving fired teachers the opportunity to be part of the recall process once established,

(2) develop a recall policy, and

(3) forbid the Board from any similar unlawful discharges in the future.

According to CTU lawyer Tom Geoghegan, “This is the second court in a little over five months to rule that the Board of Education has fired hundreds of teachers in violation of their constitutional rights.  We think the Board should end this litigation now and establish a recall policy consistent with the weighted criteria in the Illinois School Code and return these unlawfully fired teachers to their jobs.”

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