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Union Rips Daley's Comments About Teachers

CHICAGO (CBS) -- The head of the Chicago Teachers Union blasted Mayor Richard M. Daley on Friday over comments he made Thursday evening about teachers and how many hours they work.

Daley was speaking to students at Wheaton College and criticized what he said are short workdays for Chicago Public Schools teachers.

"Our teachers work 6 hours a day — 6 hours a day — now think of that — 30 hours a week!" Daley said. The mayor also claimed the Chicago Teachers Union has refused to have teachers work another 15 minutes a day teaching disadvantaged kids without getting extra pay.

On Friday, CTU President Karen Lewis made it clear she is angry with the mayor's comments.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780's Bernie Tafoya reports


"After controlling Chicago Public Schools for the past 15 years, I would have thought Mayor Daley has a much better understanding of what 30,000 educators do every day," she said.

Lewis asked how the mayor thinks papers are graded and lessons are planned.

"Do people think we have magic wands somewhere that things get done, that lessons get planned, that happens at work? No, it does not", she said.

She called the mayor's comments a political parting shot, intended to get the public angry with teachers whose contract runs out this year.

Lewis said she's "so sorry that, on his way out, that he regrets the system that he created".

She also said the mayor's comments were nothing more than political spin.

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