A deal may be reached next week to avoid a strike of Chicago teachers, but it likely won't affect Republican-led efforts in Springfield to allow a state board to oversee Chicago Public Schools.
The Chicago Teachers Union said Thursday it received a "serious" offer from CPS on a new contract.
"The basic framework calls for economic concessions in exchange for enforceable protections of education quality and job security,” CTU President Karen Lewis said in statement.
The nature of those concessions and the exact terms of the offer haven’t been revealed by either CTU or CPS.
Lewis said the deal would be reviewed by the union's "Big Bargaining Team" on Monday before being put to its delegates.
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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel characterized negotiations as "very good discussions," despite teachers having voted to authorize a strike in December. As for whether a new labor agreement would have an impact on proposals backed by Republican leaders in the General Assembly to have a state-appointed board take control of the district, Emanuel said commenting on that possibility would be "premature."
"We've had a good environment in the negotiations that are (a) hard effort, and I don't want to do anything to mischaracterize, so I'm going to respect the respect that's in the room, so let me say it that way," Emanuel said.
State Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove), who supports the plan for a state-appointed oversight board for CPS and giving CPS the option to declare bankruptcy, said he doesn't expect those proposals to be affected by any new union contract.
"Unless CTU's going to give them a loan or work for free for a long period of time, both of which are ridiculous concepts, this does not improve CPS' financial condition," Sandack said. "It just staves off a teachers' strike, which is a great thing."
The latest CPS budget relied on $480 million in pension assistance from the state which hasn't been authorized, and the district had proposed borrowing $875 million, though that bond sale has now been delayed.
Gov. Bruce Rauner, House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, and Senate Majority Leader Christine Radogno all declined to comment on a potential deal between CPS and CTU.