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It’s time to tell #TheWholeStory

Last summer, the Chicago Tribune ran a sensational anti-teacher article without regard for several key facts or the hard-working Illinois teachers who they made into collateral damage. On the heels of that story, the IFT launched a successful campaign to promote all the positives stories about the great things happening in classrooms across the state of Illinois.

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But it’s not just teachers who are under attack. Governor Rauner is taking every opportunity to mislead the public about working families and the unions who give them a collective voice, and it's time we tell #TheWholeStory.

There are schools in Illinois without enough textbooks, a librarian, or even toilet paper.

We need to tell the stories about schools running on unequal and inadequate funding.

We need to tell the stories about public employees working 21-hour days to keep our streets clean and our roads safe.

We need to tell the stories about IFT members going above and beyond for their communities and those they serve.

The Governor’s recent attacks on working families are just talking points. This is #TheWholeStory.
Contact jhill@ift-aft.org if you have an important story that needs to be heard.

JenWhite
Jen White
Teacher and President of the Champaign Federation of Teachers, Local 1925

Maria Alanis
Maria Alanis, Unit 4 Director of ESL/Bilingual Education
Dupo Federation of Teachers, Local 1732


We’ve got their backs

Local and district partner to offer a workshop aimed and empowering staff to help students feel welcome, safe, and unafraid in school.

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RobynConway
Robyn Conway
Dupo Federation of Teachers, Local 1732  | 3/23/17

“Bucks for Books” campaign unites community around literacy

The Dupo Federation of Teachers Local 1732, worked with students, parents, and the community to raise more than $1500 for the Daugherty Public Library through a campaign called “Bucks for Books.”

read more >>

DaraTurnball
Dara Turnball
Woodstock (WSRP), Local 1642  | 2/13/17

Woodstock PSRPs show “heart” in supporting each other

Paraprofessionals and School Related Personnel (PSRPs) are crucial members of our school community. As teachers’ aides, clerks, bus aides, and more, we take on a variety of duties to serve our students and their families.

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StephanieBontemps
Stephanie Bontemps
High Mount Federation of Teachers  | 1/27/17

We must fight for our public schools, universities

Paraprofessionals and School Related Personnel (PSRPs) are crucial members of our school community. As teachers’ aides, clerks, bus aides, and more, we take on a variety of duties to serve our students and their families.

read more >>

Dan
Dan Montgomery
President, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  12/30/16 

Vibrant Public Schools Hurt by For-Profit Charters
The IFT believes in a vibrant public school system that has room for the kind of charter schools Shanker envisioned: charter schools that embody the values of public education.

read more >>

LindaWilson
Linda Wilson
Peoria Federation of Teachers, IFT Local 780  |  3/21/16

Grow Your Own program increases teacher diversity in schools
Teacher brings the Grow Your Own Teacher program back to Peoria schools.

read more >>

Jason Merel
Jason Merel
Chicago Teachers Union, IFT Local 1  |  2/05/16

Union solidarity helps students sharpen critical thinking skills
Chicago teacher bridges the gaps between community and his classroom.

read more >>

Dan
Dan Montgomery
President, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  1/27/16

IFT response to Governor Rauner's State of the State address
Following Governor Bruce Rauner's "State of the State" address, IFT President Dan Montgomery released the following statement.

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Spiro
Andrew Spiro
Illinois Federation of Public Employees, IFT Local 4408  |  12/03/15

Supreme Court case would weaken workers' rights
As an IFT Member Ambassador and concerned labor activist, Andrew wrote this op-ed for the State Journal-Register to reiterate the benefits of unionism for members and non-members alike, and to warn us how the upcoming Supreme Court case, Friedrichs v. California, could impact workers and take away our voice.

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RobinMeade
Robin Meade
Moraine Valley Community College chapter of the Cook County College Teachers Union, IFT Local 1600  |  11/06/15

Ruling vindicates adjunct's right to speak out
When Robin Meade became chair of the Moraine Valley Community College (MVCC) chapter of the Cook County College Teachers Union, IFT Local 1600, she had no idea she was putting her job—teaching business courses as an adjunct—on the line.

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EileneGrandau
Eilene Grandau
Cicero Council of the West Suburban Teachers Union, Local 571  |  9/28/15

Bread and Roses
Eilene Grandau was inspired to tell this powerful story from labor history in hopes that union – and non-union – readers will understand how banding together in unions helps workers overcome obstacles and demand the dignity we all deserve.

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Aviva2
Aviva Bowen
Director of Communications, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  8/27/15

Are we shocked?
Last week, Michael Hiltzik of the Los Angeles Times ran a story about how shutting down a public pension plan – the kind of thing that occurred in nearby Michigan and regularly in Governor Bruce Rauner’s daydreams – actually costs taxpayers money.

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MattEmigholz
Matt Emigholz
IDOT mechanic
Area vice President of the Illinois Federation of Public Employees, Local 4408 | 8/25/15


"I drove 1000 miles for my union"
Emigholz recounts how he drove 1000 miles to sign up members for his union in preparation for anti-union actions from Governor Rauner.

watch video >>

MatthewKleinhans
Mathew Kleinhans
Student and 2015 IFT Robert Porter Scholarship winner  |  7/29/15

The power of team
All my life I, and many other students in public schools, have been directed towards group work and the importance of cooperation. At school, as well as in my athletic career, I have seen that there is an unmatched power in working together to achieve a goal not attainable through individual effort.

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JaneRussell
Jane Russell
President, West Suburban Teachers Union, IFT Local 571  |  5/29/15

“What’s best for the kids?”
Retired science teacher and IFT leader Jane Russell delivered the following testimony in Senate Executive Committee, describing the critical importance of collective bargaining via her personal experience. Her testimony was submitted for consideration on Senate Bill 1046, SA 1.

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BrianHarris
Brian Harris
President, ACTS (AFT/IFT), IFT Local 4343  |  5/8/15

Throw out the Illinois Charter School Commission
It is unbelievable that the Chicago Tribune claimed that the Illinois State Charter School Commission has “a history of cautious decision-making."

read more >>

DaveWoo
Dave Woo
Urban Prep Charter School Teacher
Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff, IFT Local 4343  |  5/7/15


Why my charter school needs a union
Why does my charter school need a union? In a word: accountability. After having worked at Chicago’s Urban Prep Charter Academy for six years, I have serious concerns about how resources are allocated by my own charter network.

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Maureen
Maureen Lowry-Fritz
Attorney, mom, and college instructor, Rock Valley College Faculty Association,
IFT Local 6211  |  4/28/15


“It was a life-changing experience."

Lowry-Fritz was among the hundreds of union and community members who filled the city council chambers and overflowed into the Naperville City Hall lobby this week to oppose Governor Rauner’s “right-to-work” agenda.

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BrianHarris
Brian Harris
President, ACTS (AFT/IFT)
IFT Local 4343  |  4/26/15


Illinois education secretary helped create bureaucracy
It is ironic that Gov. Rauner’s recently appointed Secretary of Education, Elizabeth Purvis, should complain that Illinois has too many units of school government, keeping money out of the hands of principals and teachers (“Rauner blasts CPS as layered in ‘bureaucracy’ once run as ‘political patronage operation’ ” – April 20).

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Aviva Bowen
Director of Communications, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  4/23/15

Everyone is corrupt except the Governor
We need to rebuild the middle class. We need to strengthen public structures — our schools, our unions, our social services — because the mission of government matters and must serve all people, not just the most fortunate.

read more >>

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Kenzo Shibata
Media Director, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  4/15/15

The #RealRauner shows his true colors
I was recently chatting with a former student of mine, David, who is a youth organizer. He told me about a program he coordinates called Teen REACH (Responsibility, Education, Achievement, Caring, and Hope) at Morrill Elementary School in Chicago.

read more >>

Leah2
Leah Putnam
2nd Grade Public School Teacher, Indiana  |  3/31/15

Indiana: A Cautionary Tale for Illinois
Moving from the third largest public school system in the United States with a strong union, to a “right-to-work” state has been quite eye opening. In Indiana, and across the country, politicians with corporate agendas are systematically dismantling public education.

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Grossman
Steve Grossman
President, North Suburban Teachers Union Local 1274  |  2/26/15

The inequality debate
Politicians from both sides of the aisle are now beginning to acknowledge the large and growing gap between the most affluent Americans and the rest of us, and to recognize the destructive nature of that inequity on our economy and society. A recent study shows that by the end of this year, the top 1% will hold 50% of the nation's wealth.

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Dan
Dan Montgomery
President, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  2/25/15

The President, The Governor, and Pullman
Last week, I had the honor and fun of taking my 10-year-old son James to Chicago's Pullman neighborhood to attend the signing ceremony for President Obama's Executive Order declaring the Pullman Historic District Illinois's second national monument.

read more >>

LeoGerard2
Leo W. Gerard
International President, United Steelworkers  |  2/23/15


13 Million Illinois Citizens Named Bruce
The billionaire Republican Governor of Illinois, Bruce Rauner, injected himself into ceremonies in Chicago last week presided over by the city’s Democratic mayor and the nation’s Democratic president.

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Dan
Dan Montgomery
President, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  2/20/15

Month one of Governor Rauner
As I’m sure you know, Governor Rauner’s first weeks in office have been nothing short of a whirlwind. I wanted to take a moment to update you on what has been happening, where things stand, and what comes next.

read more >>

DavidSoll2
David Soll
Bus Driver, Harlem Federation of Teachers, Local 540  |  2/11/15

Stop blaming unions already. It's getting boring.
In his first-ever State of the State address, newly-elected Governor Bruce Rauner outlined his hope to create “right-to-work” zones in and around our state, essentially giving local municipalities the legal right to create areas of the state that are hostile to unions.

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Aviva2
Aviva Bowen
Director of Communications, Illinois Federation of Teachers  |  2/10/15

What's this really about?
Rather than offer concrete solutions to adequately fund public education or save critical social services that face potential budgetary collapse (see: childcare program), our new Governor has waged an ideological war on unions and the workers we represent.

read more >>

Bruno
Robert Bruno
Professor of labor and employment relations, University of Illinois  |  2/6/15

The dangers of Illinois as a 'Right to Work' state
Gov. Rauner has asked state and local lawmakers to consider adopting union-free business zones. So let’s imagine Illinois as a “right to work” state.

read more >>

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