The third largest city in US went on a strike this Thursday. It was mostly the teachers who made this decision for the betterment of their students. They wanted to improve the teaching conditions of the schools in Chicago. Teachers made some specific demands in a contract that wasn’t approved by Mayor Lori Lightfoot and CPS. That’s why about 32,000 public workers planned to go on strike in the nation’s third-largest city Chicago. And this contract affects about 400,000 students and their families.
The failure to reach mutual grounds resulted in the protests that happened in Chicago this Thursday. Major demands of the contracts were – wages and benefits for underpaid workers, many of whom are female, part-time workers or people of color. These demands and the strikes are a gradual result of the teachers protests that happened in early 2018.
According to reports, teachers want extra support staff to handle students and they also want to decrease the class student numbers to a manageable low. Currently, one class has 30-40 students. That’s not a sizeable number and the teachers face difficulty in providing quality education to children. Thus, their demands included- hiring more support staff – social workers, nurses, librarians. The union also wants enforceable limits on classes.
CPS made a counter offer that includes relief from crowded classrooms. But it’s offer regarding the support staff isn’t what the teacher’s Union demanded. The CPS offers 16% increase in salary after 5 years of which is less than what is anticipated by the teachers.
Lori Lightfoot isn’t buzzing and is dead set on the negotiations set by CPS. She said that agreeing on anything more will cost the annual CPS budget over two billion which is completely irresponsible.