By CBS 2 Chicago Staff

CHICAGO (CBS) — Word of the death of former Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis on Monday as the CTU prepares to vote on a tentative agreement to return to in-classroom learning.

But more work needs to be done before it’s a done deal.

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Late Monday, the Chicago Teachers Union tweeted that its House of Delegates voted to send the terms of the tentative agreement announced Sunday by the Chicago Public Schools to rank-and-file teachers for a union-wide vote. That vote was 526 to 82, with 12 abstentions, the union said.

The union emphasized that this did not mean the House of Delegates had accepted the plan.

Teachers and staff have until 11:59 p.m. Tuesday to cast a vote on the tentative deal by secret electronic ballot.

“For every CPS school community, the right to a safe workplace is intertwined with every parent’s right to a safe school for their child. The proposed framework represents the absolute limit to which CPS is willing to go to guarantee a minimum number of guardrails for any semblance of safety in schools,” the union said in a statement.

The union also noted that 90 percent of delegates voted “no confidence” in the district leadership of Mayor Lori Lightfoot and CPS.

“Delegates’ vote of no confidence tonight reflects their disgust that it has taken almost a year of effort just to extract the most basic enforceable safety guarantees from a school district with a dismal record of broken promises,” the union said in a statement.

If the rank-and-file union members vote no on the reopening framework, it could trigger a lockout and a strike. If teachers vote to accept the deal, there will be a staggered return to in-person learning.

If CTU votes ‘yes’ on tentative agreement, this is when teachers and staff would return:


  • Pre-K/Cluster – Return Thursday Feb. 11th
  • K-5th Graders – Return March 1st
  • 6-8th Graders – Return March 8th

Teachers/Staff Return

  1. Pre-K/Cluster – Feb. 11th
  2. K-5th – February 22nd
  3. 6-8th – March 1st

“We need to give parents options and that’s exactly what this tentative agreement does,” said Mayor Lori Lightfooot. 

The tentative deal establishes guidelines for a return to all-remote learning if COVID rates spike.

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It also gives vaccination priority to high-risk teachers and those who teach in neighborhoods hardest hit by the pandemic.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff