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For six months, the mayor’s CPS bargaining team has stalled at the table, rejecting CTU safety proposals as Lightfoot refuses to stand up robust testing, student vaccines and other safety protections in schools.

  • 7:00 a.m., Wednesday, January 5: Press conference with parents, CTU educators and officers, via Zoom. The press conference will be livestreamed to the CTU’s Facebook page.
  • 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 5: Car Caravan for safety in our schools. Assemble at Union Park, Ashland Ave. and Washington Blvd., Chicago

CHICAGO, January 4, 2022 The Chicago Teachers Union issued the following statement today, after the Union’s elected House of Delegates voted by 88% to support a resolution to return to remote education during this deadly surge in the absence of safety guarantees from the Mayor’s CPS team. 73% of the CTU’s rank and file members voted in favor of that resolution this evening after the House sent the resolution to the general membership for an up or down vote. Those votes were cast over a four-hour period in a rapidly convened vote to address a groundswell of safety concerns raised by members in recent weeks. Delegates had set a threshold of two-thirds for the resolution to be considered approved, unlike a strike vote, which requires 75%.

Tonight, as educators, parents, neighbors and community members we had to make the tough decision to support a resolution to return to remote learning in our city’s public schools. This decision was made with a heavy heart and a singular focus on student and community safety.

Let us be clear. The educators of this city want to be in their classrooms with their students. We believe that our city’s classrooms are where our students should be. Regrettably, the Mayor and her CPS leadership have put the safety and vibrancy of our students and their educators in jeopardy.

To the parents and guardians of this city, we want you to know that when you put your children in our care we put their well-being and safety first. We fight for your children like they are our own, because they are. As this pandemic continues, we will do everything in our power to ensure that our classrooms are the safest and healthiest places for your children to learn, thrive and grow.

We also understand the frustration that is felt by tonight’s decision, and assure our families that we will continue to work diligently, as we have for months, to encourage the Mayor and her CPS leadership team to at last commit to enforceable safety protections centered on the well-being of our students, their families and our school communities.

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.