95 Percent of Chicago Teachers Vote to Authorize Strike Amid Contract Battle: CTU

Members of the Chicago Teachers Union have voted to authorize a strike amid an ongoing contract battle with Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Board of Education.

The union said Monday that 95 percent of members voted in favor of a strike.

“This should come as no surprise to the Board, the mayor or parents because educators have been angry about the school-based cuts that have hurt special education students, reduced librarians, counselors, social workers and teachers’ aides, and eliminated thousands of teaching positions,” the union said in a statement.

The union’s governing body will meet in a special session Wednesday to determine the next steps, including whether they will issue a 10-day strike notice to the Chicago Board of Education.

If that happens, the first possible date for a teachers’ strike would be Oct. 11.

The contract battle has been going on for months.

Among other things, the CTU is upset about CPS’ plan to phase in a 7 percent pension payment for teachers. That payment was previously covered by the city.

The CTU claims the Chicago Board of Education has rejected nearly all of the union’s contract proposals after working all of last year without a contract.

Teachers overwhelmingly approved a strike during the union's last vote in December.

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