Chicago teachers banned from remote platforms, union says after vote to go virtual over Covid concerns

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A sign is seen on the fence outside Lowell Elementary School on January 5 in Chicago, Illinois. Classes at all Chicago public schools were canceled today by the school district after the teachers’ union voted to return to virtual learning, citing unsafe conditions in schools as the Omicron variant continues to stand. spread. (Scott Olson / Getty Images)

Chicago Teachers Union tweeted On Wednesday, they are “inundated with calls and emails this morning from educators who have tried to connect to their platforms to connect with their students” but “are blocked by the mayor [Lori] Light foot.

The district canceled classes for more than 340,000 students on Wednesday after the teachers’ union voted Tuesday night to refuse to show up for work in person, citing concerns about the safety of Covid-19.

While Chicago’s public schools have not specifically confirmed that they have excluded teachers from their remote platforms, the district reiterated to CNN on Wednesday morning that “the vote was a work stoppage.”

Additionally, the district said Tuesday evening that CTU members who do not show up to school on Wednesday will not be paid. The school district said it plans to update the resumption of learning plan for families and students by the end of Wednesday.

Earlier this morning, CTU President Jesse Sharkey said educators wanted to teach, and “we’re ready to do it remotely starting today.”

Sharkey said the city “failed to meet a lot of the basic requirements that we need in schools, failed to provide adequate staff, adequate cleaning in schools, failed not provided adequate testing, did not address our concerns as people going to schools.

CNN’s Carma Hassan contributed to this article.

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