Emanuel's school board to meet for 1st time

June 15, 2011 (CHICAGO)

There is a 4 percent scheduled pay hike for teachers but that may not happen because of the Chicago Public Schools' budget crisis.

The problem is that the raise will cost about $100 million and Chicago Public School system is more than $700 million in the hole. The board could say no to this automatic raise if it believes there is no way to fund it.

The new CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard has not given a recommendation and has told the Chicago Tribune he will support the board's decision.

The teacher's union officials are expected to be at the meeting and will argue that it's the schools job to find the money which it has committed to spending on teachers.

But the 4 percent raise was built in to a 2007 contract under former CEO Arnie Duncan. That contract had scheduled raises but never called for any more time in the classroom for teachers. Emanuel has been a strong supporter of extending time in the classroom for teachers and students.

Other orders of business in Wednesday's meeting will be to consider similar raises for other union employees. The board will also elect a new president and vice president.

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