This past Tuesday, Lori Lightfoot, the Mayor of Chicago, effectively held former President Trump culpable for the present conflict between the teachers union and public schools.
Lightfoot expressed her views Tuesday on a CNN program, “New Day”, which diverged strongly with views delivered on Monday to MSNBC. Just one day previously, Lightfoot asserted that Chicago’s school system was a local governance issue, rather than a federal issue.
Without naming Trump directly, Lightfoot insisted that the current conflict between the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and the Chicago Public Schools, regarding whether or not teachers should return to the classrooms this week, can be attributed to “the incompetence of the previous administration.”
According to Lightfoot, it is critical “for both sides to come to the table in good faith,” with the recognition of a challenging situation that necessitates achieving a deal or compromise between the public schools and teachers union.
Lightfoot also noted the difficult times in general due to the pandemic, which were “exacerbated by the incompetence of the previous administration.” She cites the previous administration’s not “[leaving them] with enough vaccine” as one reason underlying the conflict, and she added that “we’re going to keep working hard [to recognize] the concern … residents have regarding COVID-19.”
While Lightfoot made an appearance on CNN, she declined to offer a press conference for the parents of public school students.
The Teachers Union initiated a teacher’s strike in October 2019, which spanned 11 days. During this time, over 300,000 students had unexpected days off. While Fox News attempted to reach out to Lightfoot’s office and inquire whether or not that strike could also be attributed to Trump, her office declined to comment.
CPS CEO Janice Jackson and Lightfoot also released a joint statement on Monday Night, detailing how the CPS had rescinded its threat to prevent K-8 teachers from accessing their remote learning tools, provided that the teachers fail to show up to school facilities and teach in-person classes.
However, the teachers union also threatened having its members picket in response if they were unable to access programs necessary to teach students remotely.