CTU Takes Aim at Mendoza Support for Charters, Vouchers

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

By: Ashmar Mandou

The Chicago Teachers Union have taken issue with Mayoral candidate Susana Mendoza recently over her support for school vouchers and her stance on charter schools vs. public schools. “Susana Mendoza has pushed school vouchers that rob public school districts of funds, promoted charter schools over public schools, and touted the ‘choice’ model favored by the current mayor that is increasingly viewed as a failure by public education advocates,” said CTU in a statement to press. “But she’s ducked her hostility to public schools during her mayoral campaign—a dodge the CTU is taking direct aim at in two new digital ads that start running today.”

According to a recent poll by the state’s largest charter lobby, INCS, Mendoza is running second behind Toni Preckwinkle in the mayor’s race. Mendoza is certainly the kind of candidate INCS would get behind. Besides her strong support for charters, she was largely silent when her political ally Emanuel pushed through the mass closings of 50 schools in 2013. And in 2001, she joined then CPS CEO Paul Vallas in deriding parents’ 19 day hunger strike to demand a new high school for the overwhelmingly Mexican Little Village community—at the same time that she was boosting UNO expansion in the area. She opposes a fully elected school board for Chicago—the only school district in the state that does not elect its school board, said CTU in the statement.

“The last thing this city and our students need is Rahm 3.0—and that is exactly what Susana Mendoza represents,” said CTU President Jesse Sharkey. “She loves privatization, she has contempt for democracy for our school district, she did virtually nothing as state representative to leverage the funding that public schools desperately need—though she was happy to cosign the giveaway of hundreds millions of dollars for charters like UNO—and she would continue the politics of austerity and privatization that have plagued the regimes of the current mayor and his predecessor. People deserve to know what her agenda is—and we aim to help voters find out about her track record.”

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