2019 CTU/SEIU Strike: Resources for Parents + FAQs

-Update, October 31, 1:45pm: STRIKE IS OVER. School tomorrow, Friday, November 1. Five (5) days to be made up.

- Update, October 30, 10:20pm: You may need to watch the post- House of Delegates press conferences: CTU ; CPS

- Update, October 30, 9:55pm: No school, Thursday, October 31; CPS tweet here

- Update, October 30, 9pm: CTU tweet: "We have a tentative agreement, but we do not have a return to work agreement. So we will be at City Hall at 10 a.m. to demand the mayor return our days."  

Wednesday, October 30, 6:50PM is this WBEZ article- it's quick; read it.

SEIU Local 73 ratified their new contract on October 30, 2019.

For updates and updated coverage since October 14, we recommend WBEZ's Live Updates.

Strike Activities for Thursday, October 31:

Several schools were planning school pickets which involved welcoming families and children for trick or treating. You would need to check in with teachers to see if there will be any picketing at your school before the 10am meet up at City Hall. 

CTU is telling all members to meet at City Hall at 10am.

We encourage families to support one another during this strike- take turns with child care if possible. Do you have flexibility in your schedule and can care for another parent's children? Reach out and help each other.

Below is a list of CPS/City Contingency Plans, community center offerings, and strike camps/classes. Please email jennie@ilraiseyourhand.org with other ideas. We update this page as more information becomes available. Scroll down further for questions we are hearing from parents + answers which include links to learn more. 

CPS/City Contingency Plans, Community Center Offerings, Strike Camps/Classes

Updated on October 30, 2019

- CPS Contingency Plan 

  • Clicking on "Find a Site" brings you to the Contingency Site Locator. When you input your address, you will receive a drop down menu which includes schools, Safe Haven locations, parks, libraries, and "other" which includes local organizations and facilities which might be hosting children. 
  • Please note that you need to register your child.
  • CPS has a list of FAQs.

If you have a student with an IEP that dictates shared or dedicated aide support for safety or medical requirements and you would like to/need to send your child to school tomorrow :

  • Per ODLSS if you sign them up here and check the IEP box, ODLSS will be reviewing all IEPs and providing support to the schools as needed. Sign up now, follow up with ODLSS at (773) 553 1800 and with your school admin to confirm.

Great advice from a mom:

- Chicago Park District Parks will be open with regular hours. Some school parks will be closed. Drop-in activities available until 6 pm for school age children.

- Chicago Public Libraries You Media CPL will be open and ready. YOUmedia has 4 spaces for middle school and 15 spaces for high school age teens. The space in Harold Washington Library is open every day except holidays.

 

- YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago (10 locations). YMCA will offer a first-come, first-serve Schools Day Out program, which lets families drop off children from 7:00am-6:00pm. Prices vary by location.

- Boys & Girls Clubs of Chicago: List of clubs with addresses and contact information.

- Albany Park Community Center (Albany Park and Bronzeville) APCC Just in Case Camp registration is here. According to a Facebook post: Full day childcare in the event of CPS strikes and school closure; daily drop-in rate is $25. ***Note 10.27.19: This one seems to be full.

- Neighborhood Boys & Girls Club, 2501 W. Irving Park Road. NBGC will be open for youth from 8 am-6 pm Monday-Friday for as long as a strike lasts. To help with unexpected staffing costs, all families enrolled full time in NBGC's after-school program will have a fee of $20 per day. All families not enrolled in NBGC's after school program will have a fee of $60 per day. Financial assistance is available for families with financial challenges upon request. To register, please send an email to Maria Gomez, director of social programming, at maria@nbgc.org. Any additional questions or concerns can be directed to Maria at the above email address or by calling Maria at 773.463.4161, ext 117.

 

List of Strike Camps/Classes as a pdf.

NOTE 10.29.19: As the strike continues on, some of the links to camps/classes may not work. On Sunday, we did go through and try to find new links for added days of camps/classes but, in some cases, these links were not available yet- and we're not sure if camps/classes will be available at all of these locations now. You may need to reach out directly to check if they are adding more days.

Also note that there are limited capacities at each of the listed camps/classes, some are more costly than others, some offer scholarships, there are a variety of times available, and they serve certain ages. 

Activities for families + COLLEGE ESSAY REVIEW AND APPLICATION HELP

Waveland Bowl, 3700 N Western
With the possibility of a CPS strike and classes canceled tomorrow, do you have a game plan for your family?
Waveland Bowl is offering 2 free games of bowling for CPS students affected by the strike starting 10/17 continuing every day until the strike is settled. Valid on school days only when games are completed before 5:00 PM. Shoe rental not included.
- Museum of Science and Industry is free to CPS families during the length of the strike. They also offer discounted parking. 
- Have a high schooler? How about a college visit? 
A CPS mom sent us a friendly reminder:
"Something to add to list of things to do is for high school students to visit local colleges. We are heading to Loyola today. Even if it is just to see what types of things you like or dislike about different schools. Also a chance to check off “demonstrated interest”. As of last night Loyola had openings for 10 am and 2 pm tours"
If you go to a college's website: "Visit" is usually under "Admissions" and you can check out availability of tours & sign up online. Here's a link to Loyola: https://www.luc.edu/admission.shtml
- Have a senior? Get some help with those college essays. 
"If you are a current CPS SENIOR and would like some incredible CPS alums from Whitney Young and Lane (and a team of students from Northwestern) to read and help you edit your college apps pls fill out this form! (Link in bio)"

 

Press coverage of child care, camps, and classes with similar lists to the above linked pdf

 

Bread for Ed fundraiser

Chicago Jobs with Justice and Chicago DSA is coordinating #BreadForEd. This will help feed the students and the teachers if there is no school due to a strike. You can donate and find out more here.

Parent FAQs

Updated October 30, 2019

Where are contract talks now?

Update, October 31, 1:45pm: STRIKE IS OVER. School tomorrow, Friday, November 1. Five (5) days to be made up.

Update, October 30, 10:20pm: You may need to watch the post- House of Delegates press conferences: CTU ; CPS

Update, October 30, 9:55pm: No school, Thursday, October 31; CPS tweet here

Update, October 30, 9pm: CTU tweet: "We have a tentative agreement, but we do not have a return to work agreement. So we will be at City Hall at 10 a.m. to demand the mayor return our days." Yeah, we're waiting to hear from both CTU and CPS. They're not talking publicly so maybe they are talking to one another? 

What's happening right now, Wednesday, October 30, 6:50PM is this WBEZ article- it's quick; read it.

Apparently, negotiations continue tomorrow, Oct 31. There is a lot of information being distributed around these talks. 

SEIU Local 73 ratified their new contract on October 30, 2019.

What are ways parents can stay informed?

What will happen to my kids?

  • In their Contingency Plan, CPS says they can go to school buildings. 
  • Chicago Parks will be open with regular hours. Some school parks will be closed.
  • Chicago Public Libraries You Media CPL will be open and ready. YOUmedia has 4 spaces for middle school and 15 spaces for high school age teens. The space in Harold Washington Library is open every day except holidays.
  • In the past, some families have organized strike camps or shared child care duties.
  • Reach out to other CPS families and see if there are ways to support one another.  
  • Check with local community organizations to see what they will be offering. 
  • We’ve complied a list of camps/classes here where we will provide an updated list of ideas for families. Note: We are trying to locate camps and childcare throughout the city and trying to find affordable options. We need your help- If you know of something we should add to the list, please send us an email: jennie@ilraiseyourhand.org.

What are ways to show support for our teachers and support staff?

  • Strike Activities for Thursday, October 31:
    • Several schools were planning school pickets which involved welcoming families and children for trick or treating. You would need to check in with teachers to see if there will be any picketing at your school before the 10am meet up at City Hall. 
    • CTU is telling all members to meet at City Hall at 10am.
  • Check out what Thorp ES is doing: We Stand with Thorp Teachers and Staff. The Facebook event page invites parents and students to "Wear red and bring your signs, noise-makers and enthusiasm! Wellness Committee members will be at the school on the picket line with teachers starting at 7:30 am." We have seen several schools now doing the same as Thorp. Thanks, Thorp ES community for sharing!
  • Every Tuesday, Parents 4 Teachers does a call in to the mayor. Information can be found here in this Facebook event.
  • Other events that have happened:

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Will a strike affect my high school senior who is in the midst of college applications? 

  • Pre-strike: Talk to counselors & teachers at your school. Look for communication from your school's counselors in the coming days.
  • Families that went through this is the past tell us that many colleges extended deadlines for teachers to submit recommendations and for other supplemental materials. Students still need to meet deadlines, but teachers should have more time. 
  • Contact college admissions officers to make sure you understand the requirements at the school(s) where your child is applying. This is especially important for the early action and early decision deadlines that are coming up.
  • University of Illinois admissions blog posted October 25.
  • See this tweet from @Emerson_Toomeyare you a @ChiPubSchools high school senior who needs help editing their essay but can’t get any because of the strike? send the link here and get it revised by an alum.

My child goes to a private therapeutic day school. Will busing still be provided to my child if there is a teacher and staff strike?

Bus drivers are employed by vendors. We do not think busing to a private therapeutic day school will be impacted. To be sure, please call the ODLSS Parent Support Specialists and ask them to track down a definitive answer: names, phone numbers, and emails here. (We at RYH do have an email into ODLSS to confirm this busing would continue uninterrupted.)

My child is in a primary cluster program. Do you have any ideas for strike childcare for kids with special needs?

Since CPS is opening schools staffed with Principals, APs and Central Office staff to students, we assume children with IEPs will be accommodated. We are uncertain, though, how this day in a CPS school without teachers and school support staff would be structured. We encourage parents of children with special needs to talk to the school's principal about what sort of supports there will be should the parent have no other choice than to participate in what the school is offering in the face of the strike. (We will update this answer if we find specific childcare ideas for children with special needs. Please consider seeing the list of above and making some phone calls with this specific question.)

Updated answer Oct 7, 2019. Screenshot from the CPS Contingency Plan Frequently Asked Questions doc...

CPS_Contingency_Plan_FAQs.png

Chalkbeat Chicago: Parents asked and we answered: Six questions about the growing teacher strike threat  NOTE: A few questions asked about students with IEPs and 504s; answered and suggestions offered by Chris Yun of Access Living.

What's going on with CPS sports?

We recommend the web page for Michael O'Brien, Sun-Times HS Sports Editor for all the recent articles about strike impacts on fall sports including soccer, cross country, and football. 

I’m ready to walk the line with teachers and staff if they go out on strike. How does that work?

  • Pre Strike: Speak to your school’s teachers and staff and find out their plans. During the 2012 strike, typically, teachers picketed at their own schools in the morning. Some days there was a larger rally in the afternoon.
  • Typically, there are school level pickets from 6-30 - 10:30am every school day of the strike. There have also been schools or communities gathering together at a certain street, intersection, or park. Contact members of your school community to find out specifics day to day.
  • We also recommend following the organizations Parents 4 Teachers and the Chicago Teachers and Staff Solidarity Campaign. They are offering many ideas and opportunities to support CPS teachers and staff now and will do the same during a strike, if one occurs. 
  • Check out what Thorp ES is doing: We Stand with Thorp Teachers and Staff. The Facebook event page invites parents and students to "Wear red and bring your signs, noise-makers and enthusiasm! Wellness Committee members will be at the school on the picket line with teachers starting at 7:30 am." We have seen several schools now doing the same as Thorp. Thanks, Thorp ES community for sharing!
  • There will be pickets at 515 schools across the city PLUS a picket line at the downtown CPS building, 42 W Madison. These will be up from 6:30am to 10:30am. You can find the school closest to you by using the CPS “Find A School” tool.  

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  • Jennifer Biggs
    published this page in News 2019-10-03 11:19:13 -0500