Chicago Teachers Union rank-and-file members are voting on the union-city agreement on new COVID-19 mitigation efforts. Chicago Teachers Union Vice President Stacy Davis Gates said she expects the vote to be complete by the end of the week.
Meanwhile, Chicago Public School students are scheduled to return to school on Wednesday, after teachers return to buildings on Tuesday.
It comes after CPS canceled five days of classes amid a CTU industrial action in which teachers and staff refused to work in person as COVID-19 cases soared to even higher levels. never seen in the pandemic.
The union’s House of Delegation approved the Chicago Public Schools proposal Monday night, with 63% in favor. Elected delegates also voted to suspend industrial action and return to school.
The compromise includes expanded contact tracing, COVID-19 testing and additional KN95 masks for students and staff, as well as measures to trigger possible transitions to school-by-school remote learning.
“The agreement has two things that I think are important to have. It has safeguards for security and it is accountable to members,” Davis Gates said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Monday evening at a press conference that she hopes this will be the last of the COVID-19 disputes between the union and the district, at least this year.
“Someone has to tell COVID,” Davis Gates said. “I don’t think any member of the Chicago Teachers Union, or any family, wants COVID to continue to interrupt and destabilize our lives and these variants, they have a mind of their own. They do what they want to do…. We must be in a position of flexibility to pivot in a way that maximizes the highest possible level of security in the face of this pandemic. »