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After Chicago public schools cancel classes, conservatives protest against COVID restrictions

Right-wing experts have been furious since the Chicago Public Schools system (CPS) canceled all classes on Wednesday after the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) voted to suspend in-person instruction, instead opting for distance learning amid the recent coronavirus outbreak. cases throughout the country.

The move, which applies to 360,000 students and staff across the city, is largely due to COVID-19 safety concerns. On Tuesday night, the teachers union held an emergency meeting to address the apparent inability of the district to respond to COVID-19 concerns, leading to a formal delegate vote. . About 73% of the union’s 25,000 members support a return to distance learning.

The union has said in-person learning will resume when COVID cases subside or when it can agree on conditions for face-to-face learning with Mayor Lori Lightfoot, according to a statement. CNN.

RELATED: Fast-spreading omicron variant increases childhood hospital admissions in parts of the US

“This city’s educators want to stay in buildings with their students. We believe the classroom is where our children should be,” the union said. “But as tonight’s results show, Mayor Lightfoot and her CPS team have yet to secure the majority of schools.”


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For its part, Lightfoot vehemently opposed the union vote, saying at a press conference Tuesday that “there is no public health reason to shut down the entire system.”

“The worst thing we can do is close the whole system,” she added. “What we need to focus on is working together. What I’d like to see CTU do is not force a stop to illegal work. What I’d like to see them do is work hand in hand with us to have the children and families they’ve had. vaccination. “

However, CTU argues that CPS has demonstrated a long-standing pattern of ignoring employee concerns about COVID, specifically by not providing adequate testing and improving cover-ups.

“I am frustrated that we have to constantly struggle to get basic necessities,” said Stacy Davis Gates, vice president of the union. told NBC Chicago.

RELATED: US breaks single-day case record for omicrons – but not all regions are equally affected

“Teachers are being put in an unfortunate situation where we’re trying to keep everyone safe. We’re trying to run the school, and we’re not given the tools to do that.” CTU President Jesse Sharkey emphasized.

Based on Chicago Tribune, this move comes after months of negotiations between CTU and CPS. Last week, CTU proposed the use of a daily health questionnaire; universal PCR test for students; KF94, KN95 or N95 mask terms; and a forced transition to distance learning if more than 20% of its employees are isolated.

However, CPS responded with slightly looser restrictions, proposing that the transition threshold be set to 40% absenteeism.

Many public figures and writers came out Wednesday to criticize the union vote, suggest that further distance learning is “anti-student” and “anti-scientific.”

“Chicago teachers union should be ashamed of itself,” speak Representative Mike Gallagher, R-Wisc., in a statement. “The simple fact is that distance learning is a joke and does more harm than good to our children. But when it comes to classroom care, it seems the only people who don’t understand this are the parents. teachers union.”

“If the Democrats end the offensive, transitioning to control of the GOP at first – likely by 2024 – teacher unions should be disbanded under federal law within a month of Congress. and the new president took his seat, along with the cancellation of ridiculous welfare packages,” echo Right-wing radio host Hugh Hewitt. “

MSNBC Host, Joe Scarborough summon CTU “lack of understanding when it comes to science.”

“If you don’t want to teach, don’t teach,” he said during Wednesday’s broadcast. “Get out. Just stay home and don’t teach your kids, okay?”

Chicago COVID cases equal or near record high in Chicago, report Chicago Sun Times. Status data shows that the city has a daily average of nearly 5,000 new cases, with a cumulative number of cases of about 440,000.

https://www.salon.com/2022/01/05/after-chicago-public-schools-cancel-classes-conservatives-lash-out-over-restrictions/ After Chicago public schools cancel classes, conservatives protest against COVID restrictions

Huynh Nguyen

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