We, the Caucus of Rank-and-File Educators (CORE) are a group of CTU members united by the principles of member-driven unionism, transparency & accountability, equitable high quality education for all students, defense of publicly funded public education, a strong contract, and anti-racism. In the spirit of Karen Jennings Lewis, we believe that building broad coalitions of the entire school community - including students, families, and community partners - strengthens us in the fight for improved working conditions for staff and learning conditions for students.
As we continue to build upon our vision and coalition work, contact CORE's Steering Committee at [email protected] to provide input and requests for a school visit or one-to-one conversations.
Our vision aligns with the platform laid out in our by-laws:
- Member Driven Union – The focus of the caucus is to respond to and represent the voice of the members.
- Transparency & Accountability – All actions, elections and finances shall be open to all members for inspection and as such are open to public debate and discussion within the membership. We shall aggressively seek open governance in the Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Teachers Union, and all organizations that affect public education.
- Education for All – CORE fights for equitable high quality education for all students. To that end, CORE develops quality curricular materials and programs that will raise the social justice consciousness of students, promote an understanding of equity, democracy and human rights, and foster an interest and skills in political engagement. CORE will also seek to establish and maintain partnerships among parents, students, community, and labor organizations for this purpose.
Defense of Publicly Funded Public Education – Whereas public education is under attack from a well-funded group of business interests, politicians, privatizers and enemies of publicly funded public education, CORE seeks to defend publicly funded public education as the last bastion of democratic expression and hope for students in all public schools across Chicago.
Strong Contract – A strong Agreement between the Chicago Teachers Union and the Board of Education shall ensure that working conditions and compensation provide for optimal teaching and learning.
- Public Education – especially in black and brown communities and in rural areas, is woefully underfunded. CORE stands for a program of progressive revenue which is essential to give public schools the resources they need to provide every student with the education they deserve. To that end, we support taxes and fees on banks, corporations and the super-wealthy and oppose regressive taxation which further impoverishes those who already pay more than their share in our society.
- Anti-Racism – CORE vows to fight racism in all its forms.
Supporting Black and Brown Educators
CORE recognizes that Black and Brown educators are under attack in our city and is committed to creating spaces that raise up and promote Black and Brown educators in Chicago.
CORE raises up Black and Brown educators by:
- Encouraging the hiring of Black and Brown educators in our schools
- Actively searching out and interviewing Black and Brown educators for every opening
- Creating anti-racist educator groups in each school and providing meeting spaces in each school for Black and Brown educators
- Pushing for the leadership of CORE to at a minimum be 51% educator of color-led
- Leading the development and creation of the Black teacher center within CTU
CORE supports restorative justice within our organization, CTU, CPS, the labor movement, and within the broader society, that actively work with members and allies to address the harms caused by white supremacy and heteropatriarchy. CORE will work for justice and listen to Black voices and those of other people of color that shape and guide appropriate measures to redress wrongs.