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Chicago Teachers’ Union Votes to Strike, Cancels In-Person Classes

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Chicago students will not be able to go to school beginning Wednesday, after its Teachers’ Union (CTU) voted Tuesday to strike against in-person learning. Of the 22,000 members, 73 percent vot4ed in favor to take a “remote work action” until the Omicron spike dwindles.

The powerful Union was no match for Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot who begged the teachers to delay the vote, and instead, come to the “bargaining table.” Lightfoot wanted the city to be able to present its “updated plan” for safely returning to schools.

“We should not allow the CTU to shut down an entire school system, and for what? We don’t know how long the CTU will stretch its work stoppage” said Lightfoot. The Union denied her request outright.

CTU demands returning to work with the Covid-19 Omicron variant is irresponsible and puts students and teachers at risk. Lightfoot, however, said if teachers walk out on Wednesday, it will constitute an “illegal” collective action. She threatened those who do so will but put on no-pay status.

Chicago Public Schools CEO Pedro Martinez backed up Lightfoot saying it would cause classes to be canceled altogether because the district does not have the authority to go remote. Only the state’s governor has that authority.

On Monday, Lightfoot said in a statement “What we have learned from this pandemic is that schools are the safest place for students to be: we have spent over a $100 million to put mitigations in place, most CPS staff members are vaccinated, and we generally see little transmission in school settings.”

“Keeping kids safely in school where they can learn and thrive is what we should all be focused on” the Mayor added. Martinez sent an email to the community Sunday in which he wrote he stands “firmly behind the decision to protect our student’s physical and mental health and promote their academic progress by keeping CPS schools safely open for in-person learning.”

“The amount of noise that is out there right now, the amount of misinformation, we have so many people that are afraid, from parents to my staff, because of the misinformation and I again, I continue to plead, let’s listen to our medical professionals,” added Martinez.

National Review reports “Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady reiterated that the virus poses minimal risk to children and therefore a reversion to school closure is unreasonable, especially given that the district plans to expand its testing regime.

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Dagney Taggert

    January 5, 2022 at 5:19 pm

    On STRIKE?! GOOD!
    NO WORK- NO PAY

  2. Robert Grossman

    January 5, 2022 at 5:19 pm

    End the gravy train. Teachers go on strike so none of this strike time should count toward pensions. No work, no pay!

  3. Sad4theUS

    January 5, 2022 at 5:47 pm

    They can go ahead and go on strike but withhold their pay for all the time they’re out and refuse to teach! They’ll change their minds real quick, no letting them go on vacations and do whatever they want and continue to get paid… no work, no pay, and that’s how it should be!

  4. Juan

    January 5, 2022 at 6:45 pm

    They should be fired. but of course they won’t. Look for more backfire due to democrat policies. Lightfoot coddled the union, as has biden and the rest of the democratic supported unions and now its payback time. in the meantime kids suffer.

  5. Juan

    January 5, 2022 at 6:47 pm

    I guess my comment on firing these teachers hit a nerve with google. my message is “awaiting moderation” mmmm Reagan did it wth the air controllers but there is no willpower today

  6. Keith Allen Breedlove

    January 5, 2022 at 7:56 pm

    Mayor Lightweight ought to emulate Pres. Reagan with the air traffic controllers and fire all the ones who do not show up to teach on Monday.

  7. G

    January 6, 2022 at 4:28 pm

    Chicago is 100% big dem union city. The teachers all know they will get 100% of the back pay, they always do. So hold out and keep the kids in the same grade for another year, no one graduates this year. Then the union comes back to the table this summer, gets all their backpay and all the students get to repeat the grade.

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COVID-19

Former Harvard medical professor says he was fired for opposing Covid lockdowns and vaccine mandates

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“My hope is that someday, Harvard will find its way back to academic freedom and independence.” That is the heartfelt message from Dr. Martin Kulldorff, a former Harvard University professor of medicine since 2003, who recently announced publicly he was fired for “clinging to the truth” in his opposition to Covid lockdowns and vaccine mandates.

Kulldorff posted the news on social media alongside an essay published in the City Journal last week. The epidemiologist and biostatistician also spoke with National Review about the incident. Kulldorff says he was fired by the Harvard-affiliated Mass General Brigham hospital system and put on a leave of absence by Harvard Medical School in November 2021 over his stance on Covid.

Nearly two years later, in October 2023, his leave of absence was terminated as a matter of policy, marking the end of his time at the university. Harvard severed ties with Kulldorff “all on their initiative,” he said.

The history of the medical professional’s public stance on Covid-19 vaccines and mandates is detailed by National Review:

Censorship and rejection led Kulldorff to co-author the Great Barrington Declaration in October 2020 alongside Dr. Sunetra Gupta of Oxford University and Dr. Jay Bhattacharya of Stanford University. Together, the three public-health scientists argued for limited and targeted Covid-19 restrictions that “protect the elderly, while letting children and young adults live close to normal lives,” as Kulldorff put it in his essay.

“The declaration made clear that no scientific consensus existed for school closures and many other lockdown measures. In response, though, the attacks intensified—and even grew slanderous,” he wrote, naming former National Institutes of Health director Francis Collins as the one who ordered a “devastating published takedown” of the declaration.

Testifying before Congress in January, Collins reaffirmed his previous statements attacking the Great Barrington Declaration.

Despite the coordinated effort against it, the document has over 939,000 signatures in favor of age-based focused protection.

The Great Barrington Declaration’s authors, who advocated the quick reopening of schools, have been vindicated by recent studies that confirm pandemic-era school closures were, in fact, detrimental to student learning. The data show that students from third through eighth grade who spent most of the 2020–21 school year in remote learning fell more than half a grade behind in math scores on average, while those who attended school in person dropped a little over a third of a grade, according to a New York Times review of existing studies. In addition to learning losses, school closures did very little to stop the spread of Covid, studies show.

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