WHAT WE STAND FOR
BETTER PAY AND BENEFITS
CPS needs to stop short-changing the people who make our schools work. CTU will not accept excuses for continued neglect of teacher, clinician and PSRP pay and benefits.
FULLY STAFFED SCHOOLS
We will not tolerate the continued elimination of essential positions. We will fight for staffing commitments and good working conditions in all the areas that impact children’s learning.
SMALLER CLASS SIZES
All students need individual attention from their teachers. We cannot provide that level of attention when we have more than 40 students in a kindergarten or any other class.
JUSTICE FOR STUDENTS AND FAMILIES
Student learning also depends on what happens outside the classroom. CTU fights for social justice in the areas of affordable housing, sanctuary schools, Sustainable Community Schools, and restorative justice
In July 2019, CTU presented our arguments to the fact-finding panel required under Section 4.5 of the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Act (IELRA) as we try to settle our contract with the Board of Education. On August 15, the Fact-Finder issued a report that favored the CPS position, including bizarre statements about the contract’s impact on the next mayoral election. CTU formally rejected this report on August 26, 2019. You can learn more about the process and read the reports on our Fact-Finding page.
Where we stand at the bargaining table with CPS and Mayor Lightfoot
|Issues||Chicago Teachers Union||Candidate Lightfoot||Mayor Lightfoot and CPS|
|Class Size||Supports hard caps on class sizes to address overcrowding, plus stipends if caps are exceeded; hire more TAs.||Position unclear.||Lightfoot/CPS reject these proposals|
|Staffing||Supports hiring social workers, counselors, nurses, other clinicians at national recommended ratios; hire more case managers; full-time librarian and restorative justice coordinator in every school.||Supported racial equity, Basic Educational Supports (BES), trauma supports and training. Schools staffed with fulltime nurses, social workers, librarians. Use of TIF funds to support schools and staffing needs.||Lightfoot/CPS reject CTU proposals, including enforceable contract language on staffing to hold them accountable for recent promises to hire small numbers of nurses and SWs. LL backpedal on librarians, which are cut in proposed budget.|
|Clinicians/ Counselors||Supports comprehensive measures to ensure adequate time and appropriate workloads.||Supported additional counselors for trauma support.||Want to issue tentative assignments for next year by June 15 instead of May 15, creating more uncertainty for educators.|
|Salary||Supports raises for all, including grade increase plus steps and lanes for PSRPs to address equity for women, Black, Latinx workers.||Position unclear.||Lightfoot/CPS rejects these proposals.|
|Class prep & professional development||Supports 30 minutes of essential morning prep time for elementary teachers; more self-directed, reasonable calendar; more holidays.||Supported training in restorative justice practices, need time for that.||CUT prep time: Want 3/5 preps to be principal-directed, teachers in classrooms the moment their schedule starts and ready to teach|
|PSRP issues||Supports hiring 1,000 additional needed TAs, plus other measures to achieve equity for women, Black and Latinx educators.||Supported educator diversity, racial equity.||Lightfoot/CPS rejects committing to PSRP staffing.|
|Special Education (SPED)||Supports hiring more case managers and SPED teachers as well as more prep time to create better inclusion and more co-teaching.||Supported adequate and appropriate supports for special education students.||Would delete protected SPED 70/30 student ratio aligned with federal law, eliminate meeting for clinicians and SPED teachers to coordinate, may be open to slight increases in case managers.|
|Early childhood education||Supports the development of these programs inside CPS schools.||Supported the creation of early childhood zones.||Lightfoot/CPS reject these proposals and are pushing 3 year-olds out of CPS programs.|
|REACH teacher evaluations||Supports more procedural transparency, reduced workload (skip a cycle for highly rated), no VAM, and better appeals process.||Supported teacher diversity, but didn’t address the reality that Black teachers are hit hardest by inequitable REACH evaluation procedures.||Want to expand REACH evaluation for punitive rather than teaching purposes.|
|Testing, paperwork, lesson plans||Supports educator autonomy and stipend to complete extra paperwork; focus on culturally relevant curriculum instead of testing; stop network mandates; no more SQRP rankings.||Wanted more highly rated schools, but didn’t address how to create conditions for success in all schools; supported teacher diversity and CPS central office accountability.||Oppose any restrictions on paperwork; want the right to increase the amount of testing; want to eliminate wins in last contract regarding grading practices.|
|Sustainable Community Schools||Supports the expansion from 20 to 75 of schools run under this proven model with full wraparound services.||Supported study and expansion, wants trauma support and training, after school and sports programs, Basic Educational Supports (BES).||Oppose CTU community school expansion (program extended one year only to existing 20 schools, no commitment beyond that).|
|Affordable housing||Wants CPS to declare support for expansion of affordable housing for educators, students and parents.||Supported teacher diversity and the benefits of keeping educators in the city.||Lightfoot/CPS reject these proposals.|
|Charter schools||Supports continuing the moratorium on the expansion of charter schools.||Position unclear.||Lightfoot/CPS want to END moratorium on charter expansion.|
Member Access to Proposal Specifics
Our four main bargaining priorities are not the end of what we’re fighting for. Our proposal to CPS includes hundreds of specific contract changes to improve working conditions for PSRPs, clinicians and teachers.
CTU members can read the proposals in their entirety by logging into the MemberLink Portal. This members-only website is your area to update your contact information, read about the next House of Delegates meeting and more. A PDF download of our full set of proposals made to CPS in January can be found in the Quick Links section on the right-hand side of the page.
Our new podcast, CTU Speaks! is hosted by rank-and-file CTU members Andrea Parker and Jim Staros. We’ll chat about our union, enforcing our new contract, and our fight for the schools our children and educators deserve.