Lori Lightfoot, Chicago teachers union remain at odds over remote learning

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Negotiations between Chicago school officials and the city’s teachers union over COVID-19 safety protocols resumed behind closed doors Saturday, but hope for a quick resolution remained bleak.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot ripped the Chicago Teachers Union’s latest proposal, which backtracked on an earlier demand for mandatory testing — but wouldn’t put kids back in classrooms until Jan. 18.

“CTU leadership, you’re not listening,” Lightfoot said. “The best, safest place for kids to be is in school.”

Her response came less than an hour after the union unveiled its latest proposal, which included resuming remote instruction Wednesday. The union also supported a random screening program that students could opt out of, rather than mandatory testing.

“We’d like to see the mayor make a compromise as well,” CTU President Jesse Sharkey told the Associated Press. “I mean what the mayor is essentially offering instead is no instruction in schools at all, no services.”

Classes have been canceled since Wednesday, after the union voted to return to online instruction and asked teachers not to show up to work.

Many school districts nationwide have confronted the same issues, with most opting to stay open.

In New York City, Mayor Eric Adams has refused requests by lawmakers and the United Federation of Teachers to temporary revert to remote learning.

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The CTU has proposed starting remote learning on Wednesday.
AP
Teacher protesting
CTU President Jesse Sharkey says that Mayor Lori Lightfoot is basically offering the students “no services.”
AP

However, attendance remains low in New York City, and across the country, with many teachers and students in quarantine or opting to remain home to avoid exposure.

With Post wire services.



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