From Union City–DC Teachers Support Striking Chicago Teachers: Saying that “It’s essential for teachers across the country to join together in solidarity to ensure that teachers—who spend every day educating our students—are valued andrespected,” WTU Local 6 President Nathan Saunders came out strongly in support of striking Chicago teachersyesterday.  “We support our fellow teachers and union members in Chicago as they take a stand for fair compensation, benefits and evaluations, “ said Saunders.  The strike is Chicago teachers’ first in 25 years, and  “comes on the heels of numerous steps that left CTU members feeling disrespected, not the least of which was the district’s unilateral decision to strip teachers and paraprofessionals of an agreed-upon 4 percent raise,” according to AFT President Randi Weingarten. The Chicago Teachers Union is the AFT’s Local No. 1; The AFT was founded in Chicago 100 years ago by teachers “determined to have a voice in the quality of their workplace and the quality of the instruction provided to their students. They knew then, as CTU members know now, that collective action was the only way to improve their schools, their communities and their students’ education,” Weingarten added. “We know that the members of the CTU are prepared to stay on the picket lines. We also know they would rather be on the job, in the classroom educating their students.” – photo of CTU informational picket last month by Sitthixay Ditthavong/AP

Here’s a video that explains the history of the CTU and the reasons for this strike today.