Chicago: Facing Doomsday Choices

Diane Ravitch's blog

The Chicago public schools have absorbed cuts and layoffs and now faces a new crisis point. With a $500 budget deficit, the city is looking to the state to avoid the loss of thousands of teachers’ jobs.

John Cullerton, a Chicago Democrat and president of the State Senate, has proposed a compromise that the mayor supports, the governor supports, virtually everyone supports….but the Chicago Teachers Union.

He says it will avoid a strike and layoffs.

Why does the union oppose it? The bill eliminates the current funding system without proposing a new one to teplace it.

““Three-eighteen is not about stopping a strike. Three-eighteen is about destroying our school system,” said Stacy Davis Gates, the legislative coordinator for the Chicago Teachers Union.

“Davis Gates is referring there to something Cullerton himself wants the bill to accomplish. Along with peppering Senate Bill 318 with things like a property tax freeze to…

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