Chicago teachers finally end 11-day grueling strike

Chicago teachers returned to class on November 1, after striking for 11 days. This decision has, therefore, enabled 300,000 Chicago students to go back to school. 

The decision by the Chicago teachers to end the strike was prompted by the approval of a five-year tentative consensus with the Chicago Public Schools (CPS), and this took place on October 30.

Chicago teachers’ demand for a 16% raise

One of the demands put across by the Chicago teachers during their grueling strike entailed their pay to be increased by 16%. This ultimatum was adhered to under the five-year tentative agreement.

On the other hand, parents were hopeful that the deal made would be instrumental in propelling their children’s education. 

Their quest will be fulfilled as the consensus made will give way to enforceable class size caps, as well as extra support for special education and English language learners.

One of the parents named Julie Dworkin proclaimed:

I’m thrilled that the strike is over, and I think the things that the teachers won are very significant, and they’re going to have a big impact on the quality of education.

Under negotiation after 10 days

The tentative deal ensures millions of dollars to reduce class sizes and bring more nurses and social workers on campuses. BREAKING: We have reached an agreement with the mayor and CPS to make up five days of student instruction. Students and educators will return to classes tomorrow. #CTUSEIUstrike #whenwefightwewin

Here are some of the terms of the agreement that union members accepted late Wednesday:
  • Staffing increases, including 209 more social worker positions, which will allow for one to be placed in every school, and 250 more nursing positions by end of the contract
  • $35 million a year to reduce oversized K-12 classrooms
  • $2.5 million in recruitment and training

The deal must be ratified by CTU rank-and-file members. That vote takes place in schools 10 days after a strike is suspended, the union said.

The strike involving Chicago teachers is deemed the second-longest in a wave involving tutors across the US in places, such as Arizona, Oklahoma, California, and West Virginia.


Chicago teachers wanted funds to ease overcrowding

One of the challenges that Chicago teachers face involves overcrowded classrooms, and this has considerably hindered their optimality. 

This was one of the reasons for them to strike as they were seeking more funds to ease this burden. Moreover, they asked for more support staff. 

Conversely, the University of Chicago is expected to be the first university to charge over $100,000 per annum in tuition fees by 2025. The projections are based on data tracking the growth of university fees from 2008 to 2018, and should it increase with the same rate, then expect it to hit $100,000 soon.