But will the Chicago Teachers Union make negotiating any easier these next two days?
Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) called for a two-day break after officials pulled off one agreement.
Students K-8th grade have not attended in-person class since March 2020 due to COVID-19. CPS wanted to open schools in January, but the union has made it difficult by insisting officials have not met any demands.
On Sunday night, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced that teachers must be in their classrooms on Monday and students report on Tuesday.
The union threatened a strike. CPS threatened to lockout the teachers who did not show up.
Now they have two days to finish a deal:
“We have reached another important milestone today in our efforts to provide in-person learning for our students,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot and CPS CEO Janice Jackson said in a joint statement Monday afternoon. “We have secured agreement on one other open issue and made substantial progress on a framework that we hope will address the remaining issues. We are calling for a 48-hour cooling off period that will hopefully lead to a final resolution on all open issues.”
That’s no guarantee negotiations with the Chicago Teachers Union will stop being heated, though it’s a sign of how much has changed since Lightfoot and CPS officials initially insisted they did not have to negotiate a reopening plan with the 25,000-member union.
The parties plan to keep bargaining Tuesday and Wednesday, while tens of thousands of students who were expected to return to schools this week continue remote learning at least until Thursday.
“As a result of the progress we have made, and as a gesture of good faith, for now, teachers will retain access to their Google Suite,” Lightfoot and Jackson said.
Preschool and special education teachers reported on January 4th. CPS locked out the teachers who did not report to work. Officials still consider them “absent without leave.”
The union has already approved of a strike if CPS does not meet their demands. Officials have met many requests, but it seems like the union keeps moving the goalposts.
The Daily Wire’s Emily Zanotti Skyles with the obvious point:
I’m not sure people understand this: Chicago teachers are not going back, ever. Even if they are all vaccinated, they want teachers who live with a vulnerable person (literally all children/older people) to teach over Zoom *indefinitely* https://t.co/nYS6UFMkLS
— Emily Zanotti (@emzanotti) February 1, 2021
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