Chicago teachers strike
As states plan billions in budget cuts to schools
By Alexander Fangmann and Nancy Hanover, 29 April 2020
As the ruling class prepares to use the ongoing pandemic as an excuse to carry out long-planned attacks on public education, pseudo-lefts promote Biden.
By Kristina Betinis, 18 November 2019
The five-year contract, lauded by union and city leaders, threatens more school closures and continues the starvation of the country’s third-largest school district.
By George Marlowe, 15 November 2019
The Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey wrote a letter threatening school closures by Mayor Lightfoot as teachers vote on an agreement favored by Wall Street and widely opposed by new and veteran educators.
By Michael Walters and George Gallanis, 14 November 2019
The Sun-Times, co-owned by the Chicago Federation of Labor, published several articles smearing and attacking Chicago teachers for fighting for improved schools and wages.
By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 12 November 2019
DSA is seeking to block political discussion and opposition to the Chicago Teachers Union contract that meets none of the teachers’ central demands.
Vote “no” on the tentative teachers' contract! Form rank-and-file committees to defend public education in Chicago!
By Alexander Fangmann, 7 November 2019
With voting set to begin on the tentative agreement, teachers and other educators in Chicago are approaching a critical juncture in the fight to defend public education.
By George Marlowe, 5 November 2019
Despite the official celebration, the CTU’s tentative agreement for a five-year contract entirely accepts the terms set by Chicago Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot.
Chicago Mayor Lightfoot’s budget: Increased policing and austerity on behalf of the financial aristocracy
By Alexander Fangmann, 2 November 2019
Lightfoot’s first budget, containing large increases to the police department and higher fees affecting workers, is a continuation of the Democratic Party’s right-wing assault on the working class.
Oppose the betrayal of the Chicago teachers strike!
By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 1 November 2019
The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) announced on Thursday that it is shutting down the 11-day strike, the longest in thirty years, and sending teachers back to work today before giving them the right to vote on a new contract.
By Kristina Betinis, 31 October 2019
The tentative agreement announced by the CTU Wednesday night betrays all the aspirations of the 24,000 teachers who have been on strike for ten days.
Oppose the betrayal of the Chicago teachers strike!
By the WSWS Teacher Newsletter, 31 October 2019
The Chicago Teachers Union has announced it is shutting down the 11-day strike and sending teachers back to work tomorrow without giving them the right to vote on a new contract.
By a WSWS reporting team, 30 October 2019
The CTU is laying the groundwork for the betrayal of the ten-day strike of 25,000 public school teachers, the city's second-longest in over two decades.
By a WSWS reporting team, 29 October 2019
WSWS reporters spoke with teachers picketing in Chicago on Monday who expressed their determination to defend public education and improve conditions in Chicago Public Schools.
Democrats, union leaders intensify pressure on striking Chicago teachers to accept austerity contract
By Kristina Betinis, 29 October 2019
In a rush to end the strike, CTU leaders offered to settle for additional school funding amounting to a fraction of a percent of the school district’s budget.
As educators enter eighth school day on strike
By George Marlowe, 28 October 2019
The sellout contract agreed to by SEIU Local 73 paves the way for the Chicago Teachers Union to order the teachers back to work.
By George Gallanis and George Marlowe, 26 October 2019
The powerful strike by 32,000 Chicago teachers is in danger of being isolated and betrayed by the Chicago Teachers Union.
The way forward in the Chicago teachers strike
the Socialist Equality Party, 26 October 2019
The strike by 32,000 Chicago teachers and support staff, now in its second week, is at a crossroads.
Walkout enters seventh day
Striking Chicago teachers confront Democratic Party machine and union’s effort to isolate their struggle
By Kristina Betinis, 25 October 2019
City officials are demanding new cuts while the Chicago Teachers Union seeks to isolate the teachers’ struggle and prevent the active mobilization of mass support among workers and youth.
Tens of thousands of Chicago teachers and staff rally as Lightfoot administration announces austerity budget
By George Marlowe, 24 October 2019
The powerful strike by 32,000 teachers and school workers in Chicago is completing its third week today, as the city makes clear it will not agree to any of the teachers’ demands.
By a WSWS reporting team, 24 October 2019
Teachers, staff, parents and students spoke on their demands, the conditions in schools and their opposition to the Democratic Party’s decades of attacks on public education.
Teachers’ union calls on Elizabeth Warren in bid to strangle strike against Chicago’s Democratic machine
By Barry Grey, 23 October 2019
At Tuesday’s rally, AFT President Weingarten began by holding up the sellout of this year’s Los Angeles teachers’ strike as a victory and model for the Chicago teachers.
By a WSWS reporting team, 23 October 2019
Keyatta, a teacher’s assistant at Laura Ward Elementary said, “We need more support! Smaller class sizes, more nurses, more support staff, so no one person is trying to teach 35 kids, all at different learning levels."
By Alexander Fangmann, 22 October 2019
Claiming there is “no more money,” Mayor Lori Lightfoot and schools CEO Janice Jackson issued a letter calling on the CTU to end the strike and return teachers to the classroom while talks continue.
Form rank-and-file strike committees to expand the struggle!
By Kristina Betinis, 21 October 2019
The success of this struggle depends on a clear understanding of what teachers are up against—who are their friends and who are their enemies.
As Chicago teachers strike completes second day, union and Democratic Party working together to shut it down
By George Gallanis, 19 October 2019
What is happening behind the scenes is not a genuine fight between the Lightfoot administration and the CTU and SEIU, but a discussion of tactics and plans to best ram through another sellout contract.
By Kristina Betinis, 18 October 2019
The Chicago Teachers Union is working closely with Democratic Party politicians who control the city to shut down the strike as quickly as possible and impose an agreement that conforms to the city’s demands.
By Kristina Betinis, 17 October 2019
Teachers must make an independent initiative to expand their struggle against the Democratic Party and its program of austerity and corporate-backed “school reform.”
By Kristina Betinis, 4 October 2019
Democratic Mayor Lori Lightfoot wants teachers to accept wage increases that barely rise above the inflation rate along with higher healthcare costs and more cuts to school services.
By Kristina Betinis, 28 September 2019
The 94 percent authorization vote is a powerful expression of opposition to the conditions imposed by decades of Democratic mayoral administrations.
By Kristina Betinis, 14 August 2019
The Democratic Party “fact-finder” has come down on the side of the district’s demands for a virtual wage freeze and further inroads on teachers’ health care benefits.
By Kristina Betinis, 2 July 2019
Last month, contracts for teachers also expired in Baltimore, Maryland; Newark, New Jersey and Vancouver, British Columbia.
“All schools aren’t created equal in Chicago”
By Marcus Day, 24 May 2019
Teachers at a rally in downtown Chicago Wednesday described the deplorable conditions facing them and their students.
Teachers at three Chicago charter schools strike as union blocks common fight with public school educators
By Alexander Fangmann and Andy Thompson, 6 May 2019
The Chicago Teachers Union has worked closely with the Democratic Party to ensure that the two-tier education system is completely unaffected.
By Kristina Betinis, 12 February 2019
Charter school teachers are fighting for decent wages and smaller class sizes, but the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) is looking to expands its franchise into the charter business.
By Kristina Betinis, 6 February 2019
In the second-ever strike to hit charter schools, 175 teachers and staff at four Chicago International Charter School campuses walked out Tuesday over pay and conditions.
By Kristina Betinis and Alexander Fangmann, 11 December 2018
Union officials showered Democrats with praise while offering no concrete details of the agreement to charter school teachers or when they could vote on the deal.
By Kristina Betinis, 6 December 2018
Hours after staging a photo op at a Tuesday teachers’ rally, Chicago mayoral candidate Toni Preckwinkle announced her education platform.
By Kristina Betinis and Alexander Fangmann, 4 December 2018
Teachers at Acero schools and suburban Geneva District 304 walked out Tuesday morning as teachers in other districts prepare to fight for improved wages and conditions.
By Kristina Betinis, 12 February 2018
The merger between the two AFT locals was rejected by nearly one-third of those who voted, based on the Chicago Teachers Union’s complicity with Mayor Emanuel’s school privatization efforts.
After ultimatum and threats of job loss
By George Marlowe, 4 November 2017
After the school district of Palatine, Illinois issued an ultimatum to striking support staff, their union sent them back to work without a contract.
By Kristina Betinis, 19 October 2017
The court and the school district are running roughshod over the democratic rights of school workers who are fighting for decent wages and benefits.
By Kristina Betinis, 11 April 2017
Just hours before a scheduled vote on a one-day walkout union head Karen Lewis announced, “No, we’re not striking.”
By Kristina Betinis, 30 March 2017
As part of the latest round of cuts, the administration of Mayor Rahm Emanuel has threatened to end the school year nearly three weeks early.
By Alexander Fangmann, 3 November 2016
The Chicago Teachers Union on Tuesday announced the ratification of a concessions-laden contract.
By Kristina Betinis, 31 October 2016
The decision by the Chicago Teachers Union to delay the vote by two days, supposedly to allow teachers to read the contract, is an indication that there is widespread opposition.
Mobilize the working class to defend public education
By the Socialist Equality Party, 26 October 2016
The agreement, fraudulently presented as a “fair deal” by the Chicago Teachers Union and the Chicago Public Schools system, is a further attack on teachers and public education.
By our reporter, 20 October 2016
Both district officials and union leaders are hailing as a success a contract that will escalate the attack on teachers, while paving the way for the closure of more public schools.
By Jeff Lusanne, 20 October 2016
The American Federation of Teachers has helped craft a new contract for charter school teachers in Chicago that mirrors a concessions contract accepted for public school teachers.
By Eric London, 19 October 2016
A tentative agreement announced by the Chicago Teachers Union, and praised by the ISO, would mark a new stage in the attack on teachers and on public education.
By Marcus Day, 13 October 2016
The ISO-led Chicago Teachers Union is doing everything in its power to force its second concessions contract in four years onto angry and defiant teachers.
By Kristina Betinis, 12 October 2016
As teachers angrily denounce concessions in the CTU’s tentative agreement, the International Socialist Organization is painting the settlement as a victory against Rahm Emanuel.
By Kristina Betinis, 11 October 2016
The agreement was announced before midnight in order to prevent a strike and risk a rebellion by teachers against the Democratic Party ahead of the presidential elections.
As union heads scramble to settle
By Kristina Betinis, 30 September 2016
After nearly a year and a half without a contract, the teachers union has set a walkout date for October 11.
By Kristina Betinis, 11 August 2016
In pressing teachers for major concessions, Democratic Mayor Rahm Emanuel is relying on the Chicago Teachers Union to suppress opposition.
By our reporters, 18 June 2016
White took the SEP presidential campaign to Chicago, speaking to workers at a Ford Motor Company plant and in downtown Chicago at a transit station.
By Kristina Betinis and George Marlowe, 2 April 2016
In the face of enormous opposition among teachers to the attacks on public education, the CTU called a phony one-day “strike” to politically disarm teachers by promoting illusions in the Democratic Party.
By Kristina Betinis, 1 April 2016
The most critical issue facing teachers is developing an independent struggle against the CTU-Democratic Party alliance
By George Gallanis, 29 March 2016
As Illinois continues to operate without a budget, both Democrats and Republicans are exploiting the impasse to impose deep cuts on public higher education.
By Kristina Betinis, 12 March 2016
The struggle to defend public education brings teachers into conflict with both big business parties, the corporations they represent and the unions that push through their policies.
By Jerry White, 8 February 2016
The struggle to defend the right to education poses political questions that are critical for the entire working class.
Statement of the Socialist Equality Party
4 February 2016
A real struggle to defend public education must begin with an understanding that teachers face in the Chicago Teachers Union an enemy no less bitter than Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
By Kristina Betinis, 3 February 2016
The Chicago Public Schools announced $100 million in budget cuts just one day after the rejection of an agreement backed by the teachers’ union.
By Kristina Betinis, 25 January 2016
Negotiations between the Chicago Teachers Union and the administration of Rahm Emanuel continue amid growing resistance to cuts, including from Detroit teachers.
By Kristina Betinis, 21 January 2016
Plans to allow the city of Chicago and its school system to declare bankruptcy are part of an escalating attack on public education and all the rights of the working class.
By Kristina Betinis, 15 December 2015
While teachers have repeatedly demonstrated their determination to fight, the Chicago Teachers Union is opposed to any struggle against the Democratic Party.
By a WSWS reporting team, 25 November 2015
Teachers who have been working without a contract for five months were offered no way forward at Monday’s rally by the Chicago Teachers Union.
By Kristina Betinis, 14 November 2015
The teachers union has held so-called practice strike votes while working closely with the school board and the city to impose historic attacks on working conditions and benefits.
By Alexander Fangmann, 6 November 2015
As colleges and universities lay off workers and cut programs, Democrats and Republicans are conspiring on plans that could even involve suspending state support for the year.
Ahead of plans for 5,000 layoffs
By Kristina Betinis, 27 October 2015
CTU Vice President and ISO member Jesse Sharkey’s statements and actions in relation to the contract talks are indistinguishable from those of any garden variety union sellout artist.
By Christopher Davion, 21 October 2015
McHenry High School District 156 teachers returned to work October 13 after being pressured to agree to a deal that includes two years without any base salary increase.
By David Brown, 16 September 2015
The teachers union has moved to end the six-day strike on the basis of a sellout contract, despite broad public support for the teachers.
Amid low voter turnout
By Kristina Betinis, 26 February 2015
The election was a political debacle for both incumbent Mayor Rahm Emanuel and President Obama.
By Alexander Fangmann and Jerry White, 10 December 2014
The outcome of the “independent political” initiative of the CTU, promoted by the International Socialist Organization, is the endorsement of a capitalist politician who attacked jobs and pensions.
By Kristina Betinis, 27 June 2014
The layoffs affect more than 500 teachers and 650 assistants and school staff, in the latest attack on public education.
By Kristina Betinis, 13 May 2014
In an interview with Crain’s Chicago Business, CTU President Lewis offered to negotiate a cut to pensions for those teachers who have not yet retired.
By Jerry White and Kristina Betinis, 1 April 2014
Earlier this month, the Chicago Teachers Union promoted a boycott of state-wide tests at two elementary schools.
Defend public education
By Mike Stapleton, 4 March 2014
The St. Paul Federation of Teachers contract proposal does not in the slightest manner defend the right to public education.
By Kristina Betinis, 20 February 2014
The World Socialist Web Site spoke with striking faculty members and student supporters on the picket lines at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
By Kristina Betinis, 20 January 2014
With the collaboration of other unions and pseudo-left organizations, the CTU has formed a new organization aimed at preventing a break with the big business political establishment.
By Kristina Betinis, 16 October 2013
City leaders in Chicago plan to close additional public schools while opening new private charter schools.
By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 19 September 2013
The defeat of the 2012 Chicago teachers’ strike cleared the way for the acceleration of school closings, layoffs and other attacks on public education not only in Chicago but throughout the United States.
Amid cuts and closures
By Jeff Lusanne and Kristina Betinis, 27 August 2013
The 2013 school year in Chicago begins with 50 fewer schools, 3,000 fewer teachers and staff, and sharply reduced classroom funding.
By Jeff Lusanne, 20 July 2013
On Friday, Chicago Public Schools laid of 2,113 more teachers and staff, bringing the total summer layoffs to 3,500 as the district implements the largest round of school closings in US history.
By Alexander Fangmann, 20 June 2013
On June 14, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) announced the first wave of layoffs—a total of 663 teachers, teaching assistants and aides—as part of the impending closure of 50 schools.
By Andre Damon, 30 May 2013
The announcement by the Chicago Board of Education last week that 49 of the city’s schools will shut down, in the largest school closing in US history, marks a new stage in the offensive against public education.
By Jake Dean, 28 May 2013
Ellie Rubenstein, a teacher from Highland Park, Illinois, submitted her resignation in a speech on YouTube last week.
By Kristina Betinis, 23 May 2013
The City of Chicago announced the closing of more than 49 public schools, facilitated by the Chicago Teachers Union and its political allies, including the International Socialist Organization.
By Alexander Fangmann, 18 May 2013
The Chicago Teachers Union, whose leaders include members of the International Socialist Organization, is seeking to stifle opposition to school closings by promoting racial politics.
By Kristina Betinis and Jeff Lusanne, 10 April 2013
The overwhelming majority of those hit by the shutdown of public schools in Chicago come from poor and low-income families.
Protest against school closures in Chicago
By Jeff Lusanne and Shane Feratu, 29 March 2013
The school closure plan—one of the largest in US history—is the direct outcome of the CTU's betrayal of the teachers strike.
the Socialist Equality Party, 27 March 2013
This statement is being distributed at a demonstration of Chicago teachers today.
By a WSWS reporting team, 26 March 2013
On March 21, the city of Chicago announced the closure of 61 public schools and the “turnaround” of 6 others, where all teachers and staff are fired and school management is privatized.
By Alexander Fangmann, 25 March 2013
The announcement of plans to shut down 61 schools in Chicago, Illinois marks a new stage in the social counterrevolution in America.
By Shane Feratu, 23 March 2013
The elimination of 13 percent of Chicago public school buildings is one of the largest mass school closures in US history.
By Kristina Betinis, 23 March 2013
After the closure of 61 schools was announced by the Chicago public schools district, Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis made clear that the union supports shutting schools.
By Kristina Betinis, 9 March 2013
In whitewashing the betrayal of the Chicago teachers strike by the Chicago Teachers Union, the ISO seeks above all to cover up its own role in preparing the subsequent school shutdowns.
By Kristina Betinis, 18 February 2013
Hundreds of parents, students and teachers have attended meetings in Chicago, Illinois on the imminent closure of over 100 schools.
the Socialist Equality Party, 14 February 2013
The SEP calls for the independent mobilization of the entire working class to oppose all school closings.
By Alexander Fangmann, 6 December 2012
Anyone who may still harbor illusions that the International Socialist Organization has anything to do with socialism should take a look at the video of ISO leader Jesse Sharkey’s appearance on Chicago Tonight.
By Kristina Betinis and Jerry White, 27 November 2012
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the Chicago Public Schools district (CPS) are moving ahead with plans to close as many as 120 public schools, and open up 60 new charter schools over the next few years. About 140 schools have been identified by the district as half-empty, and are expected to be the first targeted for closure. The closings would eliminate the jobs of thousands of teachers and school support staff.