City of Chicago reaches deal with teachers, strike ends

Abigail McArthur-Self, News & Copy Editor

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On Oct. 17, Chicago Public School teachers went on strike due to issues with reaching agreements for contract negotiations. 

The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) was pushing for smaller class sizes and increased staffing. They brought requests to the city when they began negotiations and went on strike because they did not feel enough progress had been made. The CTU told The Chicago Tribune that they felt striking was an important move because it showed their investment in the issues and brought the situation to the public eye. 

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and those negotiating on behalf of the city said they were doing their best to make adjustments and work with CPS staff, but there is a limited budget and they’re not sure how much further they can go without running into financial restrictions. They believed the strike was counterproductive and was harming students’ education. 

Although the city offered proposals to move towards a smaller staff to student ratio, Chicago Teacher Union President, Jesse Sharkey, said the CTU did not believe the proposals are offering enough. 

The strike lasted a total of 15 days, 11 of which led to school cancellations. For now, both sides have agreed to a $1.5 billion deal to improve the issues brought to the table by the union. The effect this may have on students this year and the school system in the future remains to be seen.