Substance News verified a memo from Chicago school system lawyers to principals. Principals are asked to report any union activity by teachers.
Here is more about the memo.
But the most serious evidence of the bad faith in which the Emanuel administration was treating the opening of the year of the "Longer School Day" came in a detailed internal memo from CPS ordering principals not to report the problems that central administration had created — but to report protests by teachers against those examples of incompetence at the highest levels. On August 16, 2012, CPS attorneys had a memo distributed to principals.Here are the activities that are permitted by union teachers but are to be reported by principals anyway.
Please note that CTU delegates and officials have the right to engage in many different activities at the school, including:Mike Klonsky has more at his blog.
• Placing union literature on Union bulletin boards and in employee mailboxes
• Conducting union meetings at school at times and in a manner that does not disrupt school activities (note that 24-hour notice must be given under the contract)
• Distributing literature to parents and school visitors on their own time outside school grounds (e.g., on the public sidewalk)
• Engaging in peaceful informational picket on the public sidewalk in a manner that does not disrupt school activities (i.e. that does not block free access to the building)
While these are lawful activities, you should report them via the e-verify system. Other unexpected activities are possible as well.
By asking CPS principals to spy on their own teachers and report "lawful" union activity back to the central office, Rahm and Brizard have taken their anti-teacher, anti-union crusade to a whole to level. By doing it openly, in the form of a "confidential" memo, which they must have known would be leaked by union-friendly principals, the pair have sabotaged any possibility of trust between school leaders and their staffs as the school year opens. They have also made it clear that instead of bargaining with the CTU in good faith to try and reach a fair settlement and avoid a strike, the pair have instead decided to wage a campaign of intimidation. It's nothing less than an open declaration of war on the CTU.It is alarming to me that such anti-union moves are happening. This memo was discovered, but I wonder how many other such memos are going around?
CTU leaders plan to brief the union’s House of Delegates this Wednesday on what they are calling intransigent negotiations on the part of CPS— and possibly ask for issuance of a 10-day notice of intent to strike.
Last night, I asked AFT Pres. Randi Weingarten if she would take action in response to the spy memo. She called the CPS action "stupid, terrible" and promised to "reach out to the CTU" and "follow up."
Now I'm waiting to hear what the Principals Association is going to do. Brizard's memo more or less redefines the role of school principal from instructional leader anti-union spy. Brizard has already put in place “performance contracts” for principals, setting specific goals in areas such as “effective school organization." I guess we now know what that means to the folks downtown.