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Cassie Walker Burke, Chalkbeat Chicago

As City, State Drop Mask Requirements, Chicago Schools Face Period Of Mask Limbo

The mask-optional announcement comes a week after Chicago Board of Education members approved a resolution to maintain COVID-19 safety mitigations, which include a mask mandate.

Citywide

Chicago Needs 5,500 More Applicants For Local School Council Elections By Friday

The councils’ authority includes voting on the annual school budget, approving the school academic plan and selecting and evaluating principals.

Citywide

COVID Protocols: What You Need To Know About Changing Guidance In Chicago Schools

Shorter quarantine, a push for testing, school-level closures when cases rise: January has brought a round of changes to Chicago’s COVID-19 school safety protocols.

Citywide

Chicago Teachers Narrowly Approve School Reopening Deal, But COVID-19 Safety Concerns Linger

Teachers going into the vote said they had mixed feelings about the proposal, which the union's rank-and-file finalized with 56 percent in favor of resuming in-person classes.

Citywide

Chicago Schools COVID Vaccination, Testing Rates Vary Widely By Campus, Data Shows

At more than 200 schools, the opt-in COVID testing rates fall short of the city’s 10% threshold goal. At 70 schools, 10 or fewer students are enrolled in the school-based testing program.

Citywide

Is Chicago’s School Staffing Crunch About To Get Worse?

The post-Thanksgiving spike in COVID-19 cases and the emergence of the Omicron variant could further complicate existing staffing problems.

Citywide

With Little Notice, Chicago To Cancel School For First-Ever ‘Vaccination Awareness Day’

The announcement comes two days after federal officials authorized the Pfizer vaccine for children ages 5 to 11.

Citywide

New Chicago Schools CEO Pedro Martinez Got A Pay Bump — And Will Outearn His Predecessor

Martinez's contract extends through June 2026. The school board votes Wednesday to formally appoint him.

Citywide

Chicago Shortens Student Quarantines As Experts Predict November COVID Vaccine For Kids

The city's public health commissioner, Dr. Allison Arwady, said officials think vaccines should be available for kids 5-11 around the first week of November.

Citywide

Chicago Will Ramp Up Contact Tracing In Schools After Widespread Complaints

The contact tracing department will grow to more than 80 people and response time will be narrowed to 48 hours, CPS officials said.

Citywide

Bus Troubles, Missing Preschoolers: Chicago Attendance Dips On First Day

Key student groups showed attendance lags — notably pre-kindergarten students and Black and Latino students.

Citywide

What Should Chicago’s New Schools CEO Tackle First? Parents, Students And Insiders Have Ideas

Pedro Martinez, a graduate of Benito Juarez High School, took over as schools chief last week.

Citywide

6 Things To Know About Pedro Martinez, Chicago’s Next Schools Chief

The oldest of 10 children, Martinez grew up in Chicago, attended Benito Juarez High and has three sisters teaching in Chicago Public Schools.

Pilsen, Little Village, West Loop

Chicago Public Schools Will Miss This Week’s COVID-19 Testing Deadline

CPS leaders say they now aim to offer testing at every district campus by the end of September — roughly a month after its original goal.

Citywide

Illinois To Give Child Care Workers $1,000 And Cover Costs For Unemployed Parents

Gov. JB Pritzker announced the bonuses Monday as part of a broader package of child care recovery efforts.

Citywide

Will COVID Cases In Chicago Schools Force Your Child To Quarantine? Here’s A Flowchart

Many parents and educators still have questions about when families are notified about confirmed COVID-19 cases and how quarantine works.

Citywide

As Quarantine Notices Go Out, CPS Needs More Time To Fully Expand School COVID Testing

The district had pledged voluntary testing for every school would be in place during the first week of the school year.

Citywide

Mayor Lori Lightfoot: Chicago Head Start Funding Cutoff Is ‘Irresponsible’

Unless full funding is restored, city officials say nearly 1,000 low-income children younger than 5 could be forced to transfer mid-school year to other programs.

Citywide

School Bus Driver Shortage In Chicago Prompts $1,000 Payments To Families And Calls To Uber, Lyft

About 10 percent of the district’s drivers resigned between Aug. 23 and Aug. 27, leaving the nation’s third-largest school district short about 500 drivers.

Citywide

Chicago Schools Are Fully Reopening For The First Time In More Than 500 Days. Here’s What To Know

Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey said the union has no intention of blocking the start of the school year. But it will continue to “ring alarms” about what he described as safety shortfalls, he said.

Citywide
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