To kick off Black History Month, the Chicago’s Teacher’s Union (CTU) is supporting the city’s teachers to shift their curriculums for their newly-crafted school movement “Black Lives Matter at School Week.”
According to a Blue Lives Matter report, adopted by the union’s House of Delegates on Jan. 10 – the CTU welcomed a resolution dedicating the week of Feb. 5 to Black Lives Matter (BLM), urging teachers to wear clothes that showcased the movement and inviting them to a plethora of union-hosted BLM events.
The week was first shared on a Facebook page created in the beginning of December, according to the news outlet. The CTU’s website directed teachers to said aforementioned page, giving tips on how to implement the BLM school week – though it is uncertain to pinpoint who is behind the 2018 national push – but regardless, the Chicago’s teacher union is welcoming it with open arms.
The recently passed resolution by the CTU supported teachers to give lessons on related topics like “school-to-prison” pipeline, black immigrant youth, black women empowerment, the black LGBTQ community, and black history.” It was made unclear who exactly the union believed was responsible for the teacher’s “pushout,” saying that “there were too few Black educators and educators of color … in proportion to the number of students of color they teach.” according to the news outlet.
The news outlet also reported that the CTU pointed the finger at law enforcement, citing the negative effects they have on the Chicago school system and how police should be out of schools. The union went on to say that both “Black and Brown” students faced unfair punishment by Chicago Public Schools.
Other cities, though the unanimous consent of the CTU, have wrestled with the proposal, according to the news outlet. New York City’s largest teacher union, The United Federation of Teachers, recently voted down a proposal to endorse the BLM but the union’s leaders did not agree with this call and voted against the said proposal.
According to the news outlet, members reported that LeRoy Barr, the black assistant secretary of the union, said in the closed-door meeting that the BLM was a splitting issue and that the union in the past has traditionally avoided such controversial subjects.
Though the teacher’s union has not endorsed it, a group named the UFT Movement of Rank and File Educators has made plans to welcome it, according to the list of involved participants.