Students and the Strike

Students and the Strike


Students had a rude awakening when CTU members announced that they had reached a tentative agreement involving their contracts and would not be striking. It was rumored that teachers would be going on strike at least for two weeks because of unfair contracts.

Many teachers mentally prepared their students for the worst by creating multiple lesson plans as packets for homework assignments for the next couple of weeks. Even seniors were urged to finish Naviance profiles and get their teacher recommendations/transcripts requested as soon as possible. This put a lot of stress not only on students but teachers. Teachers prepared themselves by picking up strike gear such as picket signs and CTU t-shirts. They were preparing for the ‘worst’ and hoping for the ‘best’.

The last strike that occurred for CTU was in 2012 and it lasted for a week. It was an unexpected break that many students took advantage of and appreciated. That strike may have been the reason that so many CPS students were getting their hopes up about this upcoming one. They remembered the freedom they had during the last strike and wanted to relive it to get them same feeling.

As the hour struck twelve on Tuesday, October 11, many were shocked to hear the news that the CTU wouldn’t be participating in a strike, not even for a day or two. Most students  admitted to not doing homework over this past 3 day weekend in the hopes of a strike. When walking into school Tuesday morning Adrienne Truitt ‘17 described her mood, “ I’m hurt, let down, bamboozled, I’m tired”

For schools like Whitney Young, homecoming week had just passed and students were looking forward to an extended break afterwards. Students were already struggling to complete schoolwork and focus in classes with the distraction of spirit week, pep rallies, and a homecoming game.

Keenan Jones ‘19 asks, “Did y’all just take the first deal they gave y’all?” It honestly came as a surprise to most students when they found out that the CTU settled for a tentative contract instead of striking for something more fair. Also most students found it highly unprofessional and rude for them to state whether or not there would be a strike or not at 12 AM on a school night. That gave students and teachers no time to prepare themselves for the next day’s ventures.

Students were so upset that there was even talk about starting their own union and striking against CPS. Even though majority of students are upset about the outcome of the negotiation, student athletes who are currently in season are glad because their seasons aren’t jeopardized. Bruce Wilson ‘17 optimistically states, “At least the volleyball team has a chance to win state now and the football team can win city!” Even though the strike not happening caught plenty of students and teachers off guard, it’ll hopefully lead to athletic victories and maybe even a future strike.