What Noble charter teachers need to know before unionizing

Mailee Smith

Senior Director of Labor Policy and Staff Attorney

Mailee Smith
April 21, 2017

What Noble charter teachers need to know before unionizing

A group of teachers in the Noble Network of Charter Schools are seeking union representation. Here’s what Noble teachers need to know before voting to unionize.

The Noble Network of Charter Schools started as an alternative to traditional public education. Instead of being controlled by school district and union rules, Noble was able to shape a school culture that better focuses on student goals and academic results.

And if you are a teacher at a Noble charter school, you know you are getting excellent results. From higher ACT scores to higher graduation rates, Noble is outpacing traditional public schools in Chicago.

But freedom from traditional public school and union constructs will be lost if the teachers unionize.

Moreover, there is a connection between the union seeking recognition at Noble and the Chicago Teachers Union, or CTU, arguably the most militant government worker union in the state. CTU has repeatedly walked out on students and their parents.

Before teachers vote to unionize, they need to know the potential detrimental impact of unionizing.

Union control can be harmful to students, parents and teachers

The last thing the Chicago students and their families need is another union. Just look at CTU: since 2102, the union has gone on strike – or considered going on strike – on at least four separate occasions. Each time, the union abandoned students, left parents in the lurch and left teachers without paychecks. The contract resulting after the 2012 strike led Chicago Public Schools to close 50 schools and lay off thousands of teachers. Read more.

There is a connection between the Union of Noble Educators and CTU

The Union of Noble Educators admits that it is joining Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff, or Chicago ACTS – which is a “joint program” of CTU, Illinois Federation of Teachers and American Federation of Teachers. As far back as 2011, a union staff coordinator for Chicago ACTS told the New York Times, “At some point, we would like all the charter schools to be part of C.T.U.” Read more.

Unions fight against – and not for – charter schools

CTU has actively worked to prevent the growth of charter schools and the number of students who can utilize them. Read more.

CTU offers a prime example of the detriment unions can bring to students and teachers alike

More information on the union power utilized by CTU and other unions:

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