Chicago, IL – Teaching artists and school office staff at Chicago High School for the Arts (ChiArts) have voted to join the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU), June 3. Three office staff voted to join the union, and later in the day, part-time arts teachers – who make up the backbone of the school’s programs in the visual arts, music, theater, dance and creative writing conservatories voted 75% (41 yes to 14 no ) to join the union.
Chicago, IL – Members of the Chicago Teachers Union’s House of Delegates voted to end a four-day remote learning action and return to school. The union announced today that by a vote of 55.5% in favor that the union would accept an agreement with Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s handpicked school board.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot locks teachers and students out of virtual classrooms
Chicago, IL – On Tuesday, January 4, more than 73% of teachers in Chicago who are represented by Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) voted to not return to classrooms on Wednesday, and instead taught their classes remotely to keep the teachers, staff and students safe as the pandemic surges. As the Omicron variant intensifies, the current positivity rate for COVID-19 in Chicago is at 23% and climbing.
Chicago, IL – Educators at three campuses of Urban Prep Charter Schools in Chicago began a strike on June 7. The strike was authorized by a unanimous strike vote. The three striking campuses are the West, Englewood and Bronzeville campuses.
Chicago, IL – Over the weekend of April 11, the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) was in bargaining with Chicago Public Schools (CPS) over the reopening of high schools in Chicago. The areas of disagreement revolve around accommodations for vulnerable teachers, scheduling to keep staff and students safe, remote work, and access to vaccines for students and family.
Chicago, IL – On April 2, Illinois Governor Jay Pritzker signed a bill, in opposition of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, that restores bargaining rights for Chicago teachers over a wide variety of issues that affect teachers and students in Illinois. This bill repeals a previous law from 1995 that limited the teachers’ rights to bargain over things like class size, layoffs, the timing of the school year, and other things. The previous bill had given power over the school district over to the mayor and ultimately was part of setting up disputes between the Chicago teachers Union (CTU) and previous Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, as well as current Mayor Lori Lightfoot, that led to multiple teachers strikes in Chicago.
Chicago, IL – On March 19, the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) issued a statement, noting, “A coalition of stakeholders – parents, students, educators, community organizations and elected officials – told Mayor Lori Lightfoot and her handpicked Chicago Board of Education for months that parents were choosing to stick with remote learning for their children, due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Black and Brown communities that make up the majority of our school district. Today, after a nearly month-long delay, Chicago Public Schools released attendance figures showing that less than 25 percent of students eligible to return have attended school for at least one day, and the district’s push for in-person learning has drawn even less students than the small number initially expected. The pandemic has brought us to this moment, and the numbers speak for themselves. Our families need assurances of safety, and it is clear that the overwhelming majority of the families we serve simply do not trust claims of equity from the mayor and CPS.”
Chicago, IL – It was a chilly morning. The temperature was in the low 30s as the educators from Chicago’s Passages Charter School gathered for their press conference, March 5. They were all wearing masks. They all were socially distanced. “We care about our students, we care about their families,” said paraprofessional educator Ann Stella Taylor.
Chicago, IL – After midnight on Wednesday, February 10, the Chicago Teachers Union officially certified ballot results ratifying an agreement between the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and Chicago Public Schools (CPS) that will provide a framework for returning to in-person learning in Chicago Public Schools. The vote to ratify the agreement passed by just over a two thirds majority. However, the union has been clear that they do not feel that this plan is what the teachers or students and community deserve. They say it is disgraceful that the Chicago Public School System could not delay reopening for a few weeks to ramp up vaccinations and preparations in schools, and that the mayor and CPS leadership were willing to do even further harm to the school district to maintain their posture. They say this is a stain on the record of the administration.
Chicago, IL – Late in the night of Saturday, February 6, the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) received a tentative framework from Chicago Public Schools (CPS) for the resumption of in-person learning. CTU members will evaluate this latest proposal and vote soon on whether to accept the offer and begin making arrangements to phase to in-person through this framework, or whether to reject the offer and face a potential lockout.