In a new twist that could complicate negotiations just days before a threatened strike, the Chicago Teachers Union on Wednesday filed unfair labor practice charges against the Chicago Public Schools.
The grievance, filed with the Illinois Educational Labor Relations Board, accuses CPS of canceling some promised longevity pay hikes and sick leave benefits. It comes at a time when both sides are still trying to negotiate a new contract.
"What they are proposing is still the two percent cost-of-living raise, but not the raises that we have had in our contract," said CTU President Karen Lewis.
CPS denied the charges, calling the the litigation "unnecessary."
"Our focus should be on negotiations and reaching a fair agreement in order to avoid any disruptions to our kids' school year. It's time to put antics aside and negotiate in good faith on behalf of our students so they can stay in classrooms with their teachers where they belong," said CPS spokeswoman Becky Carroll.
More than 29,000 teachers will walk off the job on Monday if a new contract is not hammered out by then.