CPS, CTU Disagree on Members for Advisory Committee

By Soyoung Kwak in News on Sep 24, 2011 6:00PM

2011_6_ctu_logo.jpg It's no surprise that the Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools have been at the other's throat over extending school days for students. The tension between CPS and the CTU only tightens going into the weekend, as the CTU believes that CPS ignoring the CTU's voice when it comes to drawing up an advisory committee to figure out how to implement the longer school days proposal for the next school year.

The CTU "complained" that CPS has not contacted any members they suggested to be on the advisory committee. A list of candidates for the advisory board was submitted by the CTU to CPS, per an agreement between CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard and CTU president Karen Lewis. CPS officials point the finger back at CTU and state that the members proposed by CTU haven't been contacted because Lewis refuses to be a part of the advisory committee:

"That offer was tied specifically to creating a way to get Karen Lewis comfortable enough to sit on the committee," said CPS spokeswoman Becky Carroll.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Lewis "rejected an appointment to the advisory committee ... because she was unhappy with members who she felt were politically connected. Brizard agreed to allow her to add five people of her choice if it meant she would join." So far, Brizard has not been able to convince Lewis to join the committee, which means the list of candidates CTU submitted won't see the light of day. There's no word on whether Lewis plans to join the advisory committee and yield to CPS demands, but our bet is that she'll probably stand her ground for as long as she can.