CHICAGO, Feb. 4, 2021—The Chicago Teachers Union issued the following update this afternoon on negotiations with Chicago Public Schools for a safe return to in-person instruction:

“Our current tentative agreements with Chicago Public Schools are the direct result of collective action from our members, and the support of parents and communities. Prior to educators voting overwhelmingly to exercise their right to work safely and remotely, CPS leadership said repeatedly that it did not have to negotiate a safe reopening.

“As a result, our union begged for earnest conversations with CPS leadership for months. But these conversations are now taking place as parties remain in constant communication and we are here, in the 11th hour, working towards a full agreement.

“Our goal is, and has always been, a mutually agreed upon safe reopening plan for our schools. These decisions, however, cannot be made unilaterally in a vacuum. They require buy-in from all stakeholders in our school communities, and we will continue to lift democracy in soliciting feedback from educators and families in bargaining for the safe return that our students deserve.”

The Chicago Teachers Union represents more than 25,000 teachers and educational support personnel working in Chicago Public Schools, and by extension, the nearly 400,000 students and families they serve. The CTU is an affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers and the Illinois Federation of Teachers and is the third-largest teachers local in the United States. For more information please visit the CTU website at www.ctulocal1.org.