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Chicago Teachers On Strike

Teachers strike in Chicago puts reform, resistance, respect and big politics in the spotlight.

Public school teachers cheer as they march on streets surrounding the Chicago Public Schools district headquarters on the first day of strike action over teachers' contracts on Monday, Sept. 10, 2012 in Chicago. For the first time in a quarter century, Chicago teachers walked out of the classroom Monday, taking a bitter contract dispute over evaluations and job security to the streets of the nation's third-largest city — and to a national audience — less than a week after most schools opened for fall. (AP

Public school teachers cheer as they march on streets surrounding the Chicago Public Schools district headquarters on the first day of strike action over teachers’ contracts on Monday, Sept. 10, 2012 in Chicago. For the first time in a quarter century, Chicago teachers walked out of the classroom Monday, taking a bitter contract dispute over evaluations and job security to the streets of the nation’s third-largest city — and to a national audience — less than a week after most schools opened for fall. (AP)

The country’s got an education crisis, and Chicago’s got a teachers strike.  Talk about an epicenter.  The President’s hometown.  His former chief of staff, the Mayor – Rahm Emanuel.  His education secretary, Arne Duncan, Chicago’s former school boss, now pushing reform nationally.

Rahm Emanuel wants reform.  Chicago teachers want respect.  And air conditioning.  And more computers.  And textbooks that arrive on time.  Now it’s all boiled over, in the middle of a presidential campaign.

This hour, On Point:  the Chicago teachers’ strike, the nation’s education.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Joel Hood, reporter for the Chicago Tribune.

Steven Greenhouse, the labor and workplace reporter for The New York Times.

Laura Washington, columnist with the Chicago Sun Times.

Timothy Knowles, director of the University of Chicago’s Urban Education Institute .

From Tom’s Reading List

Chicago Tribune “Talks between Chicago’s school board and the city’s striking teachers failed to produce an agreement Monday, leaving more than 350,000 children locked out of the classroom for a second day.”

New York Times “The high-stakes strike by 26,000 public school teachers in Chicago is only the latest episode in which the nation’s teachers’ unions have been thrown on the defensive in the face of demands for far-reaching changes.”

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