Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations

Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations
DISCLAIMER:If you find some videos are disabled this is a result of Gulen Censorship and filing of fake copyright infringements to Utube.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Chicago Math and Science Academy- STOP BREAKING THE LAW February 11, 2011

This school is also under the Concept Schools as Horizon Science Academy is
They fall under Niagara Foundation in Chicago, and have had issues with following
the labor laws of the state of Illinois as previously reported on here.

Stop breaking the law’ protest tells Chicago charter school [with video]
CHICAGO - If Sulejman Dizdarevic were peeking out the window of his swanky law offices on Feb. 11, he surely would have been startled. There staring at him from the opposite side of the street, with bulging eyes, long nose and whiskers, chomping on a cigar and holding sacks of cash, was a giant, ugly rat.
The inflatable rat was erected by supporters of teachers at Chicago Mathematics and Science Academy in front of Dizdarevic's office, because he sits on the board of directors of the charter school that they accuse of subverting teacher's rights to form a union and violating Illinois labor law by refusing to negotiate a contract. Dizdarevic is an attorney at Belongia, Shapiro and Franklin.
CMSA is part of Concept Schools, a charter chain with schools across the Midwest.
Teachers at the school voted 67 percent in favor of joining the Chicago Alliance of Charter Teachers and Staff (Chicago ACTS) in June of last year. CMSA management fired Rhonda Hartwell, a leader of the organizing effort who was eight months pregnant, fifteen minutes before teachers announced they were forming a union. CMSA said her firing was for budgetary reasons but later announced a $1.5 million profit.
The teachers saw joining the union as a means to gain a voice in school decisions. They have been shut out and the resulting frustrations contributed to a high turnover rate.
They have been in a battle for recognition ever since. Instead of investing resources in staff salaries, CMSA hired a notorious, expensive union busting firm, Seyfarth Shaw (partner Jim Powers has since left the law firm but took the CMSA account with him).
"Regardless of the anti-union reasons motivating these charters, we are finding fear of transparency is the key issue," said James Thindwa, an organizer for Chicago ACTS, which is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers and now represents teachers at eight charter schools.
"In almost every case, we have discovered that schools have more money than they claim. Teachers at Civitas were told there was no money for a raise, but when an audit was done, $2.5 million was found lying around," said Thindwa
The battle for union recognition by charter schoolteachers has grown as charters have assumed a larger presence in the city. The Board of Education voted to create another 13 charter schools on Jan. 26.
"CMSA are saying this is a private school, not subject to state law," said Thindwa. "They walked away from the bargaining table despite the fact that this union is certified under state law. What CMSA is saying is they don't recognize the state."
Charter schools are covered under Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board and employees are required to get the support of 50 percent plus one to gain union recognition. CMSA refused to accept this and took their case to the National Labor Relations Board, claiming they were a private company not covered under the law.
But the NLRB ruled CMSA is indeed a public school receiving public funds and management must follow state law. CMSA has appealed the decision and in the meantime walked away from the bargaining table.
Thindwa said every board member of CMSA would be targeted for pressure because they were personally responsible for the downward spiral the school finds itself in. They started with Dizdarevic; a delegation of community, clergy and academics delivered a letter to his office demanding management comply with state law.
"We told him we are not going away," said Martha Biondi, a professor at Northwestern University. "We are community members concerned about the right of teachers to organize a union, especially under the law of Illinois. It's outrageous that they are flouting the law of Illinois."
Episcopal Church Deacon Tim Yeager joined the protest because "it's for the teachers to decide if they want a union. They've chosen to have one. It's none of the management's business but management is obligated to sit down and bargain with them over the mandatory subjects of bargaining. They should do it."

If Sulejman Dizdarevic were peeking out the window of his swanky law offices on Feb. 11, he surely would have been startled. There staring at him from the opposite side of the street, with bulging eyes, long nose and whiskers, chomping on a cigar and holding sacks of cash, was a giant, ugly rat.


  1. Brian Chelmecki (Math department head) was leading the union efforts at CMSA. His proud pictures were at the union’s web site and press releases…In union supporting literature that teachers designed he consistently stated they were doing this for the students of CMSA and it was all about the students and other cliché jargon. GUESS WHAT? Brian left in the middle of the school year and hung his students out to dry, first chance he got. He found a job at another charter school. So "we are doing this for students" was a big lie?

    Rhonda Hartwell is another prime example of how manipulative the union and their supporters can get…She claimed that she was let go due to his involvement in union organizing at CMSA. She was "dying" to get back to "her students." But she settled her case with the school for $40,000 WHEN in fact she currently HAS a job and even makes more than she did at CMSA.

    So the $40,000 that she scooped from the CMSA was not the students’ money?!!! She was "all for students" when she did not even blink siphoning $40,000 from the school. Such a HYPOCRAT! These people are all HYPOCRATS! No on buys their argument…NO ONE!

    Another union supporting teacher who proudly wore her union button around the school again left her students in the middle of the year. What happened to her pride and commitment to the students…I guess she forgot ALL about it and her already wide, scary wide, eyes got even wider when she saw more money at another school.

    You ALL need to wake up to such hypocrisy and BS by the union and union supporting teacher at this school…

  2. Anonymous thank you for your commentary from the point of view of the Gulen Movement.
    First of all Brian was forced out of the school CMSA as Rhonda Hartwell was. Lets be honest here, you have replaced both of these American teachers with teachers from Turkey.
    The fact that excellent teachers like Rhonda and Brian have moved on to other charter schools making more money is a loss to CMSA but the gain to the other schools. When you are harassed by management and "managed out" they have no choice but to move on. The fact that Hartwell received a payout from CMSA of $40,000 speaks for itself as wrongful dismissal. A cheap price for CMSA to avoid a public litigation and public attention.

    BTW the word you are looking for in English is Hypocrite (not HYPOCRAT) The only one not "buying their argument" is CMSA and your board of directors aka known members of Hizmet.

    These Teachers didn't "leave" CMSA but were forced out by your Turkish Management (which is disorganized and uneducated to American laws)

    Thank you for your spin on the truth, but
    it is already known by the courts in Illinois via depositions and declarations regarding the circumstances surrounding their "removals".

    But nice try my little deceptive cheeky monkey. Try some of that transparency that Dr. Hendricks is asking for and maybe your Gulen Managed charter schools might make it past 120 schools instead of getting denied expansion and new charter applications. Stop with the excuses and assume some responsibilty.

    Until you can be truthful to Americans about your schools, you will get more of the same that is happening every day in American news regarding the Gulen Movement and the schools.
    AND you will not intimidate, threaten or jail
    American journalists!!!!

    Keep posting your stories, it is getting more and more interesting

    BTW, Brian's pictures were at the Union website because they are heros to other American teachers across the USA that are standing up to your manipulation of the American education system.

    Next time kindly post your opinion one time as if you duplicate we will delete the duplications. Are you thinking that if you state your "story" 100 times it will somehow be true? Keep dreaming.

    Truth is the only thing that will help the Gulen Movement win in America. Stop being ashamed of your association with the Gulen Movement.