With the Chicago teachers' strike now a thing of the past, one
conservative watchdog group says the union came out the clear
winner it its fight with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the school
Steve Gunn of the Education Action Group Foundation (EAG)
believes the settlement with the Chicago Teachers Union is a
setback for public education. He says Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the
school board "waved the white flag of surrender and sold out the
children of Chicago."
"It looks to us as though Mayor Emanuel
and the school board said we'll give you whatever you want. We
won't hold you accountable for your job performance; we don't care
if the kids learn. We just want you off the streets and back in the
classroom, because this looks bad for President Obama's reelection
campaign," Gunn states. "That's pretty much how we see this
He asserts that unions in other large cities that host many of
the country's worst schools are watching closely.
"In most cities and states like that, public officials are
putting pressure on to increase student performance and increase
teacher accountability," he explains. "They've been watching
Chicago to see whether they should give in to those demands, or
whether it's worth fighting. Apparently the message they got is
it's worth fighting."
Gunn hopes Illinois legislators will do what 37 other states
have done already: pass a law banning teacher walkouts.