BREAKING NEWS: CTU members approve the COVID-19 agreement reached with CPS

By Vivian Kaleta, Copy Editor

Payton students returned to school while CTU members voted to approve an agreement with CPS regarding COVID-19 school safety protocols. (Photo from December 1, 2021)

After five days of closed schools due to a dispute between Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Teachers ​​Union, CPS students returned back to school on Wednesday, January 12. According to the school district, no schools moved to school-wide remote learning today but in some schools individual classrooms switched to remote temporarily. Nearly 89% of teachers reported to work overall.

Today, teachers had until 4 PM to vote on whether to approve the school safety agreement negotiated with the school district over the attempt to transition to remote. The last COVID-19 agreement expired in August.

The agreement passed with approval from a simple majority of CTU members. The union’s governing body could have voted to restart the labor action set to expire on Jan. 18, if failed. Almost 56% of CTU members approved the agreement putting an official end to the CTU and CPS dispute. Although approved, many teachers argue that the deal doesn’t include the protections they wanted.

Still undecided is whether the five days of canceled class for students will be made up and whether teachers will be paid for wages lost during the shutdown. As of now, the CTU is advocating for wages to be made up and for the missed days to be added to the end of the school year if the school district is worried about children missing instruction.

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