CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago teachers went on strike Monday for the first time in 25 years after their union and district officials failed to reach a contract agreement despite intense weekend negotiations that the union said were productive but still failed to adequately address issues such as job security and teacher evaluations.
The two sides were not far apart on compensation, but were on other issues, including health benefits — teachers want to keep what they have now — and a new teacher evaluation system based partly on students' standardized test scores, Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis said.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel condemned the union's decision,
More than 26,000 teachers and support staff were expected to hit the picket lines early Monday, while the school district and parents carried out plans for keeping nearly 400,000 students safe and occupied while classes remain empty in the coming days in the nation's third largest school district.
When he took office last year, Emanuel inherited a school district facing a $700 million budget shortfall. Not long after, his administration rescinded 4 percent raises for teachers. He then asked the union to reopen its contract and accept 2 percent pay raises in exchange for lengthening the school day for students by 90 minutes. The union refused.
Emanuel, who promised a longer school day during his campaign, then attempted to go around the union by asking teachers at individual schools to waive the contract and add 90 minutes to the day. He halted the effort after being challenged by the union before the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board.
Chicago teachers to strike after talks fail - Yahoo! News
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Indeed, they really care about the Kids and the City. This is why Chicago Public Teachers get no respect from the rest of the Teachers in Illinois. One they make it tougher to deal with the IEA and their Union. All my life I have lived here and truthfully. CPS should not be tied to City Politics. Most of these teachers in the City. Not all of them. But most. Are about nothing but a free Ride.
Is this fair to the kids? Fair to Parents? Fair to the City?
700 million shortfall.....JUST FOR CPS alone! Tell me they can say they didnt know? Expect the youth violence and gang violence to increase even more now! Thoughts?