The House of Delegates adopted this resolution at its March 9, 2022 monthly meeting.

CTU Resolution for Student Debt Cancellation

WHEREAS the student debt crisis is a teacher debt crisis, and

WHEREAS nearly half of today’s educators took out student loans to pay for college, and

WHEREAS today’s average teacher carries about $58,700 in debt – as much as their annual salary. One (1) in seven (7) teachers owes more than $105,000 in debt, and

WHEREAS educators of color carry far more debt than white educators. More than half of Black educators (56 percent) took out student loans—with an average initial amount of $68,300—compared to 44 percent of White educators, who borrowed $54,300 on average. One (1) in five (5) of those Black educators still owe more than $105,000. In a nation committed to education as a means of racial justice, educators themselves are trapped in a system of racialized debt, and

WHEREAS student loan debt is an often-overlooked barrier to diversifying the U.S. teaching workforce, and

WHEREAS student debt cancellation increases the take-home pay of millions of indebted teachers, at no cost to their employing school districts, because the federal government bears financial responsibility of federal student loans, and

WHEREAS cancelling student loan debt represents an enormous economic opportunity for Chicago to increase spending in our local community, support individuals in gaining upward social mobility; and provide a deeply needed stimulus during the pandemic, and

WHEREAS cancelling student debt is a policy that has broad political and public support, especially here in Chicago, and

WHEREAS student debt cancellation is only one step towards improving public education, and must be accompanied by free higher education for all, among other measures, and

WHEREAS President Joe Biden has full executive authority to cancel all federal student debt using his powers of executive order, therefore, be it

RESOLVED the Chicago Teachers Union calls for President Biden to sign the executive order to cancel all federal student debt before the expiration of the federal student loan payment moratorium on May 1, 2022.