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Despite Chicago Teachers Union Vice President Jesse Sharkey’s non-committal answers in an interview earlier today, the CTU has gone ahead and filed the 10-day strike notice, which is required prior to any teacher walkouts.

Most CPS students will attend their first week of school, which begins on Tuesday, September 4. Teachers are not allowed to begin striking until Monday, September 10.

Contentious negotiations between CPS and the CTU have dragged on for months. However, the teachers began preparing for a strike even before a report from a third-party arbitrator was released – a report which both the CTU and CPS ultimately rejected.

At a meeting I attended back in June, the CTU partnered with Occupy Chicago protesters and other sympathizers to create the CTSC – the Chicago Teachers Solidarity Campaign. Even at this early date, the speakers were throwing around “strike rhetoric,” telling supporters that as many people as possible would be needed on the picket line if a strike were to occur.

Two weeks ago, the CTU was printing signs in anticipation of a strike. Teachers have been informally picketing and protesting outside of various district schools.

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