Victories All Around in Chicago Teachers Strike

Victories All Around in Chicago Teachers Strike

Nearly all of the parties involved in the stalemate between Chicago teachers and Mayor Rahm Emanuel that shut down the city's schools for eight days last month seem to have gotten something out of the dispute. 
Teachers may have gained the most. The contract settlement that ended the strike - but which still has to be ratified by the teachers union's full membership - would raise teacher pay an average of 17.6 percent over four years. It would also limit the amount test scores count towards teacher evaluations to 30 percent. The district had wanted that percentage to be 45 percent. The teachers also managed to hold on to their health insurance increases, seniority pay increases and raises for additional education, which the district had sought to limit or eliminate. 
The teachers didn't get everything they wanted. The union had actually sought a 30 percent pay increase. And both the school day and school year will be extended, which will effectively add two years of instruction time for every student over the course of their school career. But overall, the teachers came out ahead. 
"Across the board, on every issue, the teachers got a more favorable outcome than the school system," said Robert Bruno, a professor of labor relations at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and director of the school's Labor Education Program in Chicago. 
Emanuel, meanwhile, gained a teacher evaluation system and other concessions that he said will make the city's teachers more accountable. 
"This is in the best interest of our students, who need the very best teachers," he said. "It is in the best interest of our teachers, who always strive to achieve the best results they can for their students and want to develop as professionals, as every professional does." 
Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis said the strike also drew national attention to important issues facing teachers, students and school districts. 
"I think this has been an opportunity for people across the nation to have their voices heard, and I think we're moving in the right direction," she said 
There was even an upside for some of the city's 350,000 public school students. 
"It was kind of boring being at home, so I'm kind of glad I'm going back to school so I don't have to have any more baby sitters," said Grace Bauer, a student at South Loop Elementary School. (CNN.COM, CBSNEWS.COM) 

The above article is provided by the State Net Capitol Journal. State Net is the nation's leading source of state legislative and regulatory content for all states within the United States. State Net daily monitors every bill in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and the United States Congress - as well as every state agency regulation. Virtually all of the information about individual bills and their progress through legislatures is online within 24 hours of public availability.

To subscribe to the Capitol Journal and access archived issue go to the State Net Capitol Journal

If you are a subscriber, you can access State Net Bill Tracking, State Net Full Text of Bills, or State Net Regulatory Text. If you are interested in learning more about State Net, contact us.

For more information about LexisNexis products and solutions connect with us through our corporate site.