October 11, 2016 - 2:47 PM
CHICAGO - The Latest on Chicago Public Schools and the teachers' union averting a strike (all times local):
Chicago Teachers Union Vice-President Jesse Sharkey says he's confident that teachers will approve the tentative contract deal that averted a strike in the nation's third-largest school district.
The union's House of Delegates will meet next week. After that, rank-and-file members will be given time to read the proposed deal and vote on it. Sharkey said Tuesday that process should be completed in two to three weeks.
Even if the deal is rejected, Sharkey says it might be possible to revise it and avoid another strike threat.
Sharkey says the agreement has "a lot of wins" for Chicago's school children.
He noted a requirement to have an assistant in classrooms that have more than 32 students in kindergarten through second grade, calling that the first enforceable limit on class sizes in 20 years.
A Chicago high school that would have been named after the nation's first African-American president is a casualty of the deal that prevented a teachers strike.
The deal that the Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools reached late Monday includes roughly $88 million from a $175 million surplus from tax-increment financing, or TIF, funds. The deal required several aldermen to sacrifice projects in their wards that would have been paid for with those funds.
Alderman Walter Burnett said Tuesday the project he agreed to sacrifice indefinitely is the $60 million selective-enrolment high school that Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced prior to the start of his 2015 re-election campaign and suggested be named for President Barack Obama.
Both the proposed school and its name stirred controversy, with some questioning its need in its proposed North Side location, far from where Obama built his political career on the South Side.
Members of the Chicago's City Council are wondering how the city will pay for the last three years of a four-year tentative agreement between the teachers' union and the school district.
The deal relies in part on the use of $88 million from a $175 million surplus of the city's special taxing districts known as tax increment financing, or TIF, funds.
Aldermen point out that once the surplus is used, it is gone. And while TIFs are replenished, there is no guarantee they will generate a surplus.
Alderman Pat Dowell says she doesn't expect there will be TIF money available next year, meaning that the union and the school district are going to have to find another way to finance the agreement.
Late Monday night, the CTU and CPS averted a widely expected strike with the announcement that a tentative deal was reached just before the deadline.
A spokesman for Mayor Rahm Emanuel says Chicago will divert money from special taxing districts to public schools as part of a deal with the city's teachers union that averted a strike.
Spokesman Adam Collins said Tuesday that the city has a $175 million surplus from its tax increment financing, or TIF, funds and that roughly half — about $88 million — will go to Chicago Public Schools.
It isn't clear how much the new four-year contract with teachers will cost the city overall.
The Chicago Teachers Union and the nation's third-largest school district reached a tentative agreement just before the midnight Monday deadline.
Relieved parents are taking their children to school after the Chicago Teachers Union and the nation's third-largest school district averted a strike.
Word came late Monday that the union and Chicago Public Schools had reached a late-night tentative contract agreement. The union had set a strike date for Tuesday if there was no agreement. It would have been the second major Chicago schools strike since 2012.
Dropping his two daughters off at school Tuesday morning, Michael Cleveland says he had been convinced there was going to be a strike. He says he is angry with city officials because "there are kids involved."
The union's House of Delegates and its full membership still must approve the deal. That could take weeks.
Students and teachers in Chicago are heading back to the classroom after the Chicago Teachers Union and the nation's third-largest school district averted a strike with a late-night tentative contract agreement.
The union had been prepared to hit the picket lines Tuesday morning for what would have been the second major Chicago Public Schools strike since 2012.
But just before a midnight deadline, the union and CPS said Monday it had reached a deal. It still must be approved by the union's House of Delegates and its full membership, a process that could take weeks.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel and union President Karen Lewis both said they were relieved that the district's nearly 400,000 students will be in class Tuesday.
The four-year proposal includes cost-of-living increases in the third and fourth year.
News from © The Associated Press, 2016