CTU and SEIU members were back out on the picket lines despite the cruddy weather. For the second day in a row they targeted a luxury residential site funded by TIF money, by protesting at the 78.
CTU leaders announced that they had potentially reached a tentative agreement with the school board on the condition that the mayor allows schools to make up the days they’ve lost to the strike. The mayor has refused to budge on this issue, seemingly for the sake of petty optics. Depriving students of a week and a half of lessons goes against her avowed support for education.
The CTU’s House of Delegates met to go over the agreement. After deliberating for two and a half hours, they returned to say that while they voted 363 to 242 to accept the tentative agreement, they do not have an agreement to return to work until the mayor agrees to make up the days missed to the strike.
Additionally there are signs that the teachers’ victory will extend beyond their contract. Momentum is growing among elected officials for an elected school board, an issue Lori Lightfoot campaigned on but has since resisted, with State Senator John Cullerton and Speaker of the House Mike Madigan agreeing to support.
SEIU ratified their contract with 97% of membership voting to approvet. The contract, which is for five years retroactive to July 2018, includes pay raises of 17% to 40% over its span, up to 40 days of accruable sick time, paid vacation time for custodians and bus aides, self-directed prep time for special education classroom assistants, and a pledge that the union will be involved in future discussions about whether to involve privatized custodial services in the schools.
At 10 am at City Hall, CTU is rallying to demand that the school days lost to the strike be made up. This is the final barrier to ending the strike and claiming a significant victory for the future of the city.
The Red Star Bulletin was conceived by Ramsin Canon and is a project of the Political Education & Policy Committee. This update was drafted by CDSA members. Special contributions were made by Devin Schiff and Nick Hussong. Graphics were contributed by Patrick O’Connell. If you would like to contribute to the Red Star Bulletin or have any feedback, email firstname.lastname@example.org.