Chicago Aldermen Sound Off On Teacher Strike - NBC Chicago
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Chicago Aldermen Sound Off On Teacher Strike



    It might have been business as usual for aldermen at Wednesday's Chicago City Council meeting, but outside City Hall walls, the first teacher's strike in 25 years continued for a third day.

    Aldermen said they've heard an earful from constituents, many of whom are parents of Chicago Public Schools students.

    "Parents are very concerned," said Ald. Walter Burnett Jr., (27th). "There's a lot of concern about their kids. A lot of parents are leaving their kids at home."

    "My guess is that most parents have made some arrangements for a few days," said Ald. William Burns (4th), "but as it drags on and becomes more and more difficult, they take time away from work."

    "They feel that the negotiations have been taken to a personal level instead of negotiating on the best interests of our kids in the school," said Ald. Ray Suarez (31st).

    What appears to be at the heart of the stalled negotiations is the union's concerns over the teacher evaluation process meant to tie success in the classroom with standardized test scores.

    The union also is concerned about job security, especially for teachers who lose their position when a school closes.

    "I support the fact that you can get interviewed," Suarez said, "but I don't support the fact that you have to get that job unless you're the best qualified person for that job."

    "I would love to see this end as quickly as possible, as everybody would," said Ald. Dick Mell (33rd).

    NBC Chicago has an array of reporters and producers covering the Chicago teacher strike. Check our live blog for continuous coverage and updates throughout the strike.