View Full Version : Local News Rahm Emanuel warns teaching, labor unions about changes

04-05-2011, 09:34 AM
This from Chicago Sun-Times (http://www.suntimes.com/news/education/4663932-418/rahm-emanuel-warns-teaching-labor-unions-about-changes.html) by Fran Spielman:
Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel is laying down the law to two unions whose cooperation he needs to turn Chicago around: teachers he wants to work a longer school day and laborers he wants to simply show up at work in greater numbers.

During the campaign, Emanuel declared his support for curtailing teachers’ right to strike. He also made it clear that, if teachers won’t agree to work longer hours for extra pay, he’ll ask the Illinois General Assembly to mandate it.

On Monday, Emanuel said he has made his feelings known to a Chicago Teachers Union that did not support his candidacy and to legislative leaders who are scheduled to wrap up their spring session two weeks after the new mayor is sworn in.

Mayor Daley started out demanding 45 extra minutes in the last teachers contract and ended up settling for no change at all. Emanuel sounds like he’s not prepared to take “no” for an answer.

“If you took a child in Chicago and their cousin in Houston from kindergarten through high school, the cousin in Houston will spend four more years in a classroom in instruction. Compared to Boston or New York, that’s on average about 2.5 more years. ... That’s unacceptable. We need a longer day and a longer year,” Emanuel said.

“I’ve already been in communication with those responsible for that to happen for Chicago, plus other types of things important for education reform. ... I’ve let it be known that you cannot have a city compete for new businesses, for families when you have the shortest school day and school year in the country of any major city. ... We are cheating the children of Chicago on their future.”

Pressed to describe the reaction to his ultimatum, Emanuel said, “They’re all cognizant of a couple facts: One that if you have a shorter school day, we’re selling the city short and our children short. ... Two, we have a lot of work to do to get it done.”

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