Following Friday’s Day of Action here in Chicago, CPS CEO Forrest Claypool went to court to get a judge to order the CTU to pay CPS millions of dollars in costs Claypool claims the union cost them.
Apparently this is Claypool’s school funding solution instead of focusing on Springfield.
CTU’s lawyer, Robert Bloch, is blowing off the action as mostly air.
Today’s action “was legal,” he told me in a quick phone interview, but the union “has not expressed any interest in a similar action” in the future. “This is just an effort by them to show opposition.”
Bloch also expressed no concern about fines or other monetary payments. “I’ve never heard of the labor board giving relief in a situation like this,” he said. In fact, given the fact that striking teachers were not paid for the day, “They probably made money on this.”
After reading this morning’s Sun-Times publication of Mayor Emanuel’s work schedule from last week I think Claypool may be on to something however.
The guy who was missing work was the Mayor. At least when it comes to Chicago schools.
During the same three-week period, Emanuel had just two meetings with Chicago Public Schools CEO Forrest Claypool, Chief Education Officer Janice Jackson and a host of top aides that included Arnie Rivera, senior adviser Mike Rendina, Clo Ewing, Meghan Harte, chief of policy Michael Negron, and Chief Financial Officer Carole Brown.
That’s even though CPS is running out of money with a $676 million pension payment due on June 30 and no help from Springfield in sight.
Thousands of teachers massed in front of the Thompson Center on Friday for a one-day walkout. A mid-May strike is increasingly likely. And the on-time opening of schools this fall is a giant question mark.
In spite of overwhelming public support for an elected representative school board in Chicago the Mayor remains in control of CPS.
But he’s not showing up for work.
Teachers were docked for Friday.
The Mayor, a former Wall Street trader has millions, and his pals have millions more.