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(6,477 posts)
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 01:21 AM Jan 2022

CPS classes canceled Wednesday after CTU votes to refuse in-person work

Source: Chicago Sun-Times

Chicago Public Schools classes are canceled Wednesday as the Chicago Teachers Union voted to refuse in-person work, defying district plans because of post-holidays COVID-19 concerns.

The cancellation came despite a last-minute proposal from city leaders that introduced improved testing and safety measures but wasn’t enough to avoid upending in-person schooling for about 290,000 students at non-charter schools exactly 12 months after another CPS-CTU fight over pandemic safety measures left families in limbo for weeks.

This is the third time CPS classes are disrupted by labor strife in the past 27 months.

Read more: https://chicago.suntimes.com/education/2022/1/4/22867100/cps-ctu-classes-district-proposal-teachers-vote-remote-learning

Still no text message from CPS...
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CPS classes canceled Wednesday after CTU votes to refuse in-person work (Original Post) greenjar_01 Jan 2022 OP
Have all the city leaders DENVERPOPS Jan 2022 #1
Unfortunately, it seems Lori has been all over the map on covid response. LuvLoogie Jan 2022 #2
The one big thing that is happening is the "clash of the medical titans" BumRushDaShow Jan 2022 #4
Yes, and a good leader would execute a plan acknowledging both. LuvLoogie Jan 2022 #12
When it comes to "geeky" science folks BumRushDaShow Jan 2022 #13
the testing got all screwed up orleans Jan 2022 #3
Testing kits were only for a small number of schools greenjar_01 Jan 2022 #6
i was listening to joan espisito's show yesterday orleans Jan 2022 #8
I dunno...the testing kerfuffle seems just that greenjar_01 Jan 2022 #9
If I were a parent in that district.... VarryOn Jan 2022 #5
I'm a parent of CPS students greenjar_01 Jan 2022 #7
I think the leadership of all groups involved are just reacting. LuvLoogie Jan 2022 #10
I agree with everything you say here greenjar_01 Jan 2022 #11


(6,953 posts)
2. Unfortunately, it seems Lori has been all over the map on covid response.
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 02:09 AM
Jan 2022

It seems like she has been micro-managing while avoiding executive action.

We are two years in on this pandemic, with a full year of experience executing remotely.

A decision should have been made back in November that took into account that people would be partaking in Holiday socialization.

It should have been decided to send kids home with Chromebooks/laptops over the break to prepare for remote learning for the first couple of weeks of January. They should have taken into account the new variant and likely increased infections.

But I think Lori is too concerned with how she thinks people are going to react. The CDC is going to cover their asses. She has to understand this and work within that context.

Edited to add: While I think that Toni P. might have made a better executive, I'd still vote for Lori again in a general.


(128,652 posts)
4. The one big thing that is happening is the "clash of the medical titans"
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 07:55 AM
Jan 2022

I.e., there is one very vocal group of psychologists and pediatricians who have laser-focused on the "socialization needs" of children versus the epidemiologists and virologists focus on the "physical hazards" of respiratory viruses.

The whole pandemic has essentially been guided by whichever school-of-thought becomes the "squeaky wheel".

So when the former group yells - CHILDREN MUST BE IN-PERSON IN SCHOOL OR THEY WILL HAVE PSYCHOLOGICAL PROBLEMS!!!111!!!!!!11 you have your elected and school leadership officials echo this, knowing that the mitigation to make this possible and viable is sorely lacking, particularly in the big school districts.

We have the same issue here in Philly where the School Superintendent loudly proclaimed that schools WILL OPEN for "in person" and the night before (Monday night, since schools started Tuesday) - literally some time after 9 pm because I heard the breaking news on the radio - they announced that 77 schools would be forced to shift to "virtual" on Tuesday due to 1,100 teachers having contracted COVID-19 over the holiday break and were in quarantine and thus could not staff those schools. The next morning (yesterday), they announced the number of schools going virtual was up to 81. And this morning, I heard they added 3 more schools to the list.

I really don't know how you can reconcile this battle of "psychological danger" vs "physical danger".

IMHO, I wonder if you had a radiation hazard in a school, would they demand "in person" in that instance? As it is, when there is an asbestos hazard, they MUST close the building and make other arrangements.

Perhaps the only way to give some of these people some perspective IS to compare COVID-19 in a closed environment to asbestos contamination (which seems to be a more "tangible" concept to people) and work from there on mitigation and handling. I will say that in this specific situation, the post-holiday surge has been the cause of staffing shortages and it was pretty much anticipated, but they forged ahead anyway and have been forced to make "on-the-fly" decisions, over and over and over and over.


(6,953 posts)
12. Yes, and a good leader would execute a plan acknowledging both.
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 01:24 PM
Jan 2022

They aren't necessarily contradictory, but the two major aspects of the same problem. Both have to be addressed and acknowledged. Is their no rhetorical talent that can reconcile the two in policy? Can no logistical solution address both?


(128,652 posts)
13. When it comes to "geeky" science folks
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 02:24 PM
Jan 2022

(and I am one) that is hard to do.

Everyone has a "specialty" so they will see the "problem" from their own perspective based on their training and experiences.

I think this is actually a common thing that goes on in any "problem-solving" exercise that involves multiple people participating a project. We saw that with the ongoing debate about whether the virus is mostly "droplets" or is (or can be) "aerosolized", and that opened up a can of worms with virologists and HVAC specialists regarding "ventilation" and even "masking".

There is an old saying (that has many variants) that goes - "When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail" and that is what it comes down to.


(34,043 posts)
3. the testing got all screwed up
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 04:14 AM
Jan 2022

kids were sent home with tests to take before school began.
parents dropped them off at fedex boxes & tons of them weren't picked up on time
the news was showing the drop boxes overflowing
the delay had results coming back inconclusive
what a fucking mess



(6,477 posts)
6. Testing kits were only for a small number of schools
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 11:58 AM
Jan 2022

CPS has 350,000 students, of which my kids are two. The test kits (PCR mail-in) were obviously not sent home with every student. Most people were asked to do rapid antigen tests before sending their students in on Monday, but it was all honor system. Nobody checked our test results.


(34,043 posts)
8. i was listening to joan espisito's show yesterday
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 12:15 PM
Jan 2022

on wcpt and she was saying she knows martinez is new but ... why didn't he call the heads of the new york school system and l.a.'s school system and ask how they are doing this testing, where are they getting the tests, etc etc



(6,477 posts)
9. I dunno...the testing kerfuffle seems just that
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 12:21 PM
Jan 2022

The news kept showing the same FedEx box piled high wit CPS kits. But the vast majority of CPS students did completely unaccountable private antigen tests and sent in nothing.

Kids were in person throughout the fall and all the way into the break.



(2,343 posts)
5. If I were a parent in that district....
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 11:40 AM
Jan 2022

I’d be livid.

Of course, they were going to vote not to return to the classroom. But, announcing at 11 pm the night before classes were to start?



(6,477 posts)
7. I'm a parent of CPS students
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 12:01 PM
Jan 2022

We stood by CTU through 2 longish strikes and a number of other labor actions. This one is hard to take.

Their main condition (10% positivity) is absurd, and probably won't be met for weeks. Their other condition (some metric) has already been mostly met.

Most Chicago area universities have pushed off in-person for some weeks, or don't start until later this month anyway. But when they go back, if CTU is still holding their people back, it's gonna be a shitstorm.

Never said this about a union before, but they are well and truly losing me here.

ON EDIT: Classes started on Monday - kids have already been back in school for two days!


(6,953 posts)
10. I think the leadership of all groups involved are just reacting.
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 01:15 PM
Jan 2022

There was no foresight that made it to execution. Also consider that there are some schools where half the families don't do any mitigation, let alone get their eligible kids vaccinated. I agree that 10% positivity is absurd, but you have to plan for the reality of infected students and teachers. And you have to be willing to call out the teachers and families that refuse to get vaccinated.

Two to three weeks all remote (many Latino families gather on The Epiphany). Then hybrid teaching until students show negative results.

At any rate, a plan should have been in place before Thanksgiving. There's plenty of covid data and observation in behavioral science to apply logistics that is not too much at the mercy of reactionary politics.



(6,477 posts)
11. I agree with everything you say here
Wed Jan 5, 2022, 01:24 PM
Jan 2022

Would lean toward two weeks remote rather than three.

The fact that all this was happening (and is still happening) literally at the eleventh hour is a massive failure of leadership on all sides.

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