On Saturday, the Chicago Teachers Union began using a Teamster City building to distribute strike signs and union clothing. The union also held a press conference where parents and students spoke in support of the teachers.

Becky Malone of 19th Ward Parents (pictured) said she was “sick of hearing that anyone beame an educator to make a lot of money.”

She asked: “Why is it the union had to threaten a strike so they could get such sweeping concessions” like desks for school psychologists and textbooks on the first day of school?

Union negotiators reported there was little progress in contract talks.

Drew Heiserman, a TEAM Englewood math teacher, says many teachers are of the opinion that CPS concessions on issues like teacher evaluations could avert a strike – even if there isn’t a pay raise proportional to the longer school day. “What I have heard from lots of teachers (is that although) they’ve talked about a big raise, like 15 percent, we would happily give up a lot of that for a better day for the students and more respect,” Heiserman said.

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