What a shock. CTU doesn’t want to work.
Oh, look. The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) is playing politics with the students once again. They do not care about the education or well-being of children.
Chicago has seen a spike in the Omicron variant of COVID, which gave the union a perfect excuse to cause trouble again. They used it to vote against in-person learning late Tuesday night.
The rules do not apply to the CTU. Going to remote learning must be cleared by the Chicago Public Health Department.
Chicago Public Schools (CPS) will shut down on Wednesday. The vote left the parents scrambling over what to do with their kids out of school. CPS said children can still get food at the school, and they won’t turn away any kids dropped off.
The CTU issued more demands before coming back from winter break:
CTU and CPS have been negotiating for months for a safety agreement for this school year. In a proposal submitted last week, CTU called for students and staff members to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before entering buildings Monday after their two-week winter break. Short of that, the union asked the district to go virtual for two weeks so additional safety measures could be put in place.
The union said daily health questionnaires should be reinstated; KF94, KN95, or N95 masks should be distributed to all staff and students; and a school should shift to remote learning if 20% or more of staff is in isolation or quarantine or when a school safety committee says a transition is warranted because of infection rates or noncompliance with protocols, among other demands.
Let’s see here. CPS has required indoor masking since the beginning of the school year, along with social distance rules. Unvaccinated teachers must be tested weekly, and those tests are optional for unvaccinated students.
The CTU also wants to bring back the daily health screeners, and CPS CEO Pedro Martinez said those stopped because it took too long.
But Martinez said if a school wants to have a daily health screener, they can bring back the person.
Public health commissioner Allison Arwady slammed the misinformation going around concerning children and COVID:
“One of the things I’m hearing the most misinformation about is that Chicago hospitals are filling up with children, that many Chicago children are dying of COVID, that it’s a really scary time to be a child right now with COVID in Chicago,” Arwady said at a Tuesday morning news conference.
“And I want you to understand that while, of course, we are concerned about the rise in hospitalizations, that is being driven by unvaccinated adults. Child COVID hospitalizations remain very rare. Across the whole city, approximately 550,000 children, we are averaging just seven COVID hospitalizations a day right now for children aged zero to 17.”
Arwady said Tuesday she feels “extremely comfortable” with children learning in person with the mitigations that are in place. Arwady, Martinez and Lightfoot have long emphasized that schools are where kids belong.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot went off on CTU like she did last year, describing the situation as Groundhog Day, the movie where the day repeated for Bill Murray’s character. But it seems like every year, the CTU comes up with some excuse to mess up the schools.
Plus, we all know children have fallen behind after the CTU forced the kids to do remote learning the majority of last year. The lack of school affected a lot of minority students.
Let’s face it. CPS isn’t all that great of a district, to begin with:
“If we pause, what do we say to those parents who can’t afford to hire somebody to come in and watch their kids, who can’t ship their kids off to some other place, what do we say to those students who are already struggling?” Lightfoot said Tuesday at unrelated news conference.
CPS doesn’t need a “one-size-fits-all” strategy, Lightfoot said.
“We need to lean in to the science and the data and not push that to the side and give in to fear-mongering and hysteria,” Lightfoot said.
Lightfoot also reiterated that remote learning led to learning loss among Black children, including increases in failure rates for elementary school children. CPS students spent most of the last school year learning at home before the union and the district reached agreement for kids to return to classrooms in waves.
“Why on earth, when we don’t need to pause, would we pause and risk falling back into the same old trap?” Lightfoot said. “Achievement gaps are real and they’re affecting kids of color at an exponential rate.”
A few cities went to remote learning. But the majority of schools across the country, including the rest of Illinois, went back to school.DONATE
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