Attention Parents: A Letter from CEO Janice Jackson

Dear Parents and Families,

As CPS and Mayor Lightfoot’s Office work toward fair contract agreements with our teachers and school support staff, we want to assure you that we have plans in place to provide students with a safe place to stay during the day and warm meals should a work stoppage occur. Recently, the Chicago Teachers Union set a strike date for Thursday, October 17, which is the earliest possible day a strike could occur absent a contract agreement.

In the event of a work stoppage, regular classroom instruction will not occur, but CPS school buildings will be open to students. Principals and non-unionized support staff will be available to greet students and ensure they have access to engaging activities. 

  • CPS school buildings will be open during their normal bell schedule. Students who need a safe place to go are encouraged to attend their regular school, but we will welcome students at any CPS school that is appropriate for their age.
  • Charter and contract schools will continue to operate on their normal schedules, and families should look for any updates or changes from their principal or school/charter operator.
  • All CPS schools will serve breakfast and lunch to students. 
  • After-school activities will be canceled. This includes — but is not limited to — sports, tutoring, field trips, Parent University activities, Local School Council meetings, and other community activities.
  • To ensure the safety and well-being of our students, CPS administrative office staff will be assigned to schools as needed. 
  • Chicago Public Libraries will be also open, along with a limited number of parks, Safe Haven sites, and other community partner sites. A list of alternative sites is available at cps.edu/contingencyplan. More sites will be added as additional sites are identified. 
  • School transportation services will not be available for students.

To find the closest available sites that will welcome students during a potential work stoppage, please visit cps.edu/contingencyplan to find our site locator tool to view CPS schools near your home, as well as programs at libraries, parks, and other community sites. The site locator will also include information about non-CPS locations, including their hours and whether meals will be provided. 

If you choose a CPS school, please register your child. Although registration is not mandatory, it helps ensure we have enough support staff and meals to serve children. 

While we remain confident that we can reach fair and generous agreements that honors our educators and support staff without disrupting the school year, we will be sure to keep you updated with new information as soon as it becomes available, which we will also post on cps.edu/contingencyplan

To learn more about our contract offers, which include a minimum 16 percent raise for all CTU and SEIU Local 73 members over the next five years, in addition to a variety of other benefits and measures to strengthen our schools, please visit cps.edu/ouroffer

Sincerely,

Janice K. Jackson, EdD
Chief Executive Officer
Chicago Public Schools

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