CHICAGO, July 22, 2021 – Chicago Teachers Union Statement Regarding Chicago Public School Health and Safety Updates for the 2021-2022 School Year:
Chicago Public Schools cannot use a layered mitigation practice, as reported by the CDC, and city and state public health departments, and not have a mask mandate associated with a population. not vaccinated. If science and guidelines indicate that layered mitigation will keep school communities safe, then this is what the district needs to do to keep children 12 and under and their families safe.
Overall, Mayor Lightfoot’s CPS team needs to go beyond the bare minimum of engagement and provide additional safety through vaccines, including in-person outreach in communities with low vaccination rates. Neighborhoods ravaged by COVID-19, such as Brighton Park, Belmont-Cragin and Hermosa, have more than 500 students per elementary counselor, more than double the recommended number. Across the district, 100 schools will not have full-time social workers this year, and 180 schools will not have full-time nurses.
CPC has $ 2 billion in federal funds to recover from COVID-19. Students need physical and mental health care during a pandemic, and at the moment the mayor and his district are not providing either.
The Chicago Teachers Union represents more than 25,000 teachers and instructional support staff working in Chicago public schools and, by extension, the nearly 400,000 students and families they serve. CTU is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers and the Illinois Federation of Teachers and is the third largest local teachers’ chapter in the United States. For more information, please visit the CTU website at www.ctulocal1.org.