Day 2 of Chicago Teachers Union walkout costs students

Day 2 of Chicago Teachers Union walkout costs students

The Chicago Teachers Union’s refusal to conduct in-person classes is idling students for a second day. Students pay the price for a union ignoring the public health experts and other large districts.

The Chicago Teachers Union’s refusal to teach in person is costing 340,000 Chicago Public Schools students a second day of classes.

The union and school district met Jan. 5 and negotiated over COVID-19 testing and safety protocol on the first day of the teacher walkout. Teachers said they will not return until at least Jan. 18, unless COVID-19 infections drop drastically.

CPS CEO Pedro Martinez said remote learning will not be available until at least Jan. 10. He said classes were canceled for Jan. 6.

Students ultimately pay for canceled classes through diminished academic achievement. Chicago students can’t afford poorer performance.

Chicago schools continue to underperform the state academic achievement benchmarks year after year. Nearly 1 in 4 CPS students don’t graduate high school.

Almost a quarter of CPS students are chronically absent – with almost a third of students chronically truant.

One study found long teacher work stoppages of 10 or more days have a significant negative effect on math test scores, especially in grades 5 and 6. Another found that extended work disruptions have negative effects on math and English achievement.

The pandemic already has damaged student achievement, especially for minority students. CPS has an 87% minority enrollment, and about 70% of students are low-income.

The pandemic is already expected to cost today’s student $49,000 to $61,000 in earnings during their lifetimes, according to a study by McKinsey and Co. The study also found 35% of parents are very or extremely concerned about their children’s mental health from school closures.

At a time when student achievement is already suffering, and Chicago students were already challenged, the Chicago Teachers Union is doing student no favors by keeping them out of class.

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