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A group of assembled Acero teachers with CTU VP Stacy Davis Gates and Charter Division Chair Chris Baehrend smile with fists raised defiantly at a press conference.

It’s official: We will strike on December 4.

UNO/Acero management has continued to stall in negotiations on key points that include class size, appropriate and reasonable staffing levels and equal pay for equal work.

Be clear: UNO/Acero managers are making a choice. They have decided to prioritize CEO pay at the expense of special education funding and smaller class sizes. Our school communities deserve more. Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions, and if management refuses to move at the bargaining table, we will hit the picket lines to defend our students and the educators who serve them.

Our bargaining team will continue to bargain in good faith, and we’ve scheduled two more bargaining sessions before Thanksgiving break.

Our CTU Vice President, Stacy Davis Gates, spelled it out at our press conference this morning. “The union men and women here today have made it clear that they are prepared to fight for school communities that are fully funded, ones that prioritize educational funding over CEO pay while eliminating management fees that marginalize our classrooms and rob our students,” she said. “For too long, the charter industry has had the freedom to marginalize the workers in our schools — and the audacity to promise parents one thing while offering students and their families far less. Today we’re fighting to change that status quo, through our right to bargain collectively, withhold our work and demand that education dollars actually make it into our school communities instead of being stolen away by top managers who devalue the cultural and educational needs of our students and the vital teachers and paraprofessionals who work tirelessly to educate and support them.”