CHICAGO — Union leaders say teachers employed by a Chicago charter school network are staging the first strike at any of the privately run, taxpayer-funded schools in the U.S.
The strike at Acero's 15 charter schools in Chicago began Tuesday morning after disappointing negotiations with management. Classes have been canceled for about 7,500 students.
The Chicago Teachers Union represents the approximately 500 teachers at the predominantly Latino schools. Union leaders say the teachers want smaller classes, an increase in special education staff, higher salaries and guaranteed protections for students and families living in the country without legal permission.
Acero CEO Richard Rodriguez blames the strike on an "anti-charter political agenda." He says students and parents are being forced to suffer a strike for "no good reason."