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We have reached an agreement with the Chicago Board of Education regarding veteran (longevity) pay.

Two new steps will be added to veteran teacher salary schedules, and a new veteran payment will be provided upon the 30th year of service eligible for step credit.

The addition of these steps and payment fulfills the parameters of our tentative agreement—to dedicate a total of $25 million across the five years of our contract to our veteran teachers.

We have also received written confirmation from the Chicago Teachers’ Pension Fund that the 30th year veteran payment is pensionable.

This is a great day for our veteran educators who, after years of service, are being recognized for their contributions. Adding $25 million to steps honors their work, and goes a long way towards keeping educators in the profession. That it occurred on May Day (International Workers Day) makes it that much better.

We have also settled another outstanding issue from our strike: year-round bargaining unit members (52-week employees) will be paid for five strike days as part of the tentative agreement approved in November. More info to come on how and when.

Like veteran pay, pay for these days will also be pensionable.

Additional info on veteran pay

  1. This agreement represents precedent-setting progress in adding new steps for experienced There have only been two steps added to our collective bargaining agreement since 1980. This year we won two more. This is something we can build on in the future. We should be proud of our accomplishments. We have been without step increases for 40 years. Now we have them.
  2. The addition of these steps bumps the scale even if you don’t hit a step for a year or more during the course of this agreement. This means that we add value to the scale every year of the agreement.
  3. No one is being leapfrogged by anyone below them on the salary schedule.
  4. Because of the two new steps at years 17 and 23, the pay scales for teachers with 18 years or more creditable experience will also see an increase in the pay scale each year.
  5. By the end of the contract, every full-time teacher with at least 20 years experience will be making at least $100,000 a year. We lose colleagues to other districts because they don’t climb the pay scales.  This is a significant step for retaining experienced and qualified educators in our district.

This is how the cost breaks down per every year that CPS must pay toward the additional pay:

FY20 FY21 FY22 FY23 FY24 Total Five-Year Cost
$3.1M $4.4M $5.2M $5.9M $6.6M $25.0M


  1. CPS doesn’t operate without the mayor. The mayor and CPS did not want steps at all. The mayor promised steps during the strike and in the final hours of negotiation, and then reneged.
  2. Following her refusal to uphold the agreement, the Union filed an unfair labor practice charge
  3. We now have two more steps in our salary scale to defend (like the others, for perpetuity). This lifts the entire end of the scale for ALL veteran teachers.
  4. Thirty-year veterans receive an especially large bump—not as a step—as a pensionable payment.

If you have questions regarding your specific circumstances, contact your CTU field representative.


We haven’t had this amount of steady guaranteed COLAs since the 2003-2007 contract.

  • SY 19-20=3%
  • SY 20-21=3%
  • SY 21-22=3%
  • SY 22-23=3.5%
  • SY 23-24=3.5%

The * below denotes where there will be a COLA increase for every step, and not a step increase. So while you receive a COLA increase, there will also be a “bump”—not a step, but a percent increase. This doesn’t begin until after year 17.

2015-2019 Contract Step Names 2019-2024 Contract Step Names: Years Experience (Really Years of Creditable Service) Dollar Amount of Steps (Each step bumps the subsequent salaries in the scale) Pensionable Bonus (Does not bump the salaries in subsequent years on the scale)
Step 1 Year 1
Step 2 Year 2 $935
Step 3 Year 3 $1,122
Step 4 Year 4 $1,215
Step 5 Year 5 $1,963
Step 6 Year 6 $2,430
Step 7 Year 7 $2,570
Step 8 Year 8 $2,570
Step 9 Year 9 $2,570
Step 10 Year 10 $2,430
Step 11 Year 11 $2,243
Step 12 Year 12 $1,869
Step 13 Year 13 $1,589
Step 14a Year 14 $1,355
Step 14b Year 15 *
Step 14c Year 16 *
Step 14d (CPS New 15) Year 17 $970
Step 14e Year 18 *
Step 14f Year 19 *
Step 15a (CPS New 16) Year 20 $1,262
Step 15b Year 21 *
Step 15c Year 22 *
Step 15d (CPS New 17) Year 23 $550
Step 15e Year 24 *
Step 16a (CPS New 18) Year 25 $1,262
Step 16b Year 26 *
Step 16c Year 27 *
Year 28 *
Year 29 *
Year 30 * $2,100
Year 31 *
Year 32+ *