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Chi teacher strike could impact new law

Fri, 14 Sep 2012 09:27:17 CDT

     The Chicago teacher strike undercuts a new state education that was supposed to make striking more difficult, and rare. It was just over a year ago that the governor signed into law an education package that took months to negotiate. It was characterized at the time as "ambitious reform." One provision required a 75 percent vote for Chicago Public School teachers to strike. It was a threshold set so high that one prominent backer of the law bragged teachers would never be able to meet it.   That obviously didn't happen.
     Robin Steans heads Advance Illinois, an education group that helped write the law. Chicago teachers are also striking over teacher evaluations. But Steans says no matter what teachers negotiate, the law means evaluations will become more substantive, and more frequent:


"And that as part of that, one of the things you want to, include in those evaluations is what sort of progress students are making over the course of the year. And that hasn't changed.   There are certainly questions about how you go about doing that. But the fact that that's going to be happening both in Chicago and elsewhere hasn't changed."

Steans it's too early to draw conclusions about the new law in light of the strike.

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