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Mayor has yet to agree to offers from Gov. Pritzker to provide SHIELD tests to CPS in wake of holiday testing fiasco, as parents, electeds urge mayor to pause in-person instruction, implement critical mitigations, address massive vaccination gap among Black and Latinx children.

  • 3 p.m., TODAY, Friday, January 7: Interview and b-roll opportunities, Juarez High School, 2150 S Laflin St, Chicago, IL 60608. Press availability will take place at the intersection of S. Blue Island Ave. and W. 21st St. Onsite contact: Linda Perales, (708) 408-2822.

CHICAGO — Parents, community groups, and elected officials including Pilsen Ald. Byron Sigcho-Lopez are standing with CTU educators at Juarez to outline what’s needed at Juarez for a safe return and to canvass the neighborhood so CPS families can hear from CTU members directly about what they’re fighting for.

Educators are gathering at schools across the city to reach out to whole school communities.

The mayor’s CPS team has received offers from Gov. Pritzker to provide tests to CPS and more than $2.6 billion in federal COVID relief funds for students’ COVID recovery. Yet Lightfoot continues to refuse to take leadership in protecting families and communities from COVID, with no plans for rigorous school-based testing or vaccine programs.

Less than half of CPS students are vaccinated, at the same time that city numbers for vaccinations among Black and Brown children remain dismal, according to figures the CTU obtained in response to a Freedom of Information Act request to the Chicago Department of Public Health.

Testing, contact tracing and vaccines are critical components of robust layered mitigation, yet CPS continues to fall short on these and other critical mitigations.

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.