Elementary school teachers in Chicago will not be working a longer school day for a two percent pay raise.
Chicago Teachers Union rejected the latest offer from the Chicago Public Schools Thursday, as inadequate and unacceptable.
The deal called for adding 90 minutes to the elementary school day. But from the union's standpoint the raise on the table wasn't worth the tradeoff.
"Basically he's asking for a 29 percent increase in our work load for a two percent pay raise,” Union President Karen Lewis said. “It's huge, it's problematic, it comes to about four dollars an hours for a professional and we declined.”
Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard said in a statement that he was "disappointed" the union rejected the offer, despite what he called the increasing support for a longer school day.
"Our children deserve better and it is time we make the tough choices to do better," Brizard said.
This setback comes three days after negotiations hit a standstill because of the contention by CPS that it could not afford the four percent pay raise promised to teachers this school year.
It also comes on the same day that Mayor Emanuel stepped up the pressure for a longer school day during a prayer breakfast with 200 pastors at U.S. Cellular Field. During the meeting Emanuel asked the ministers to preach in favor of the plan during this Sunday's sermon.
Emanuel called the offer a win-win for teachers and students, but the teachers union said no thanks.