Union agreement stops strike, keeping 77,000 students in class amid 'learning loss'

The Cook County College Teachers Union avoided a strike that would have impacted 77,000 students.

Student education was heavily disrupted during the COVID-19 pandemic, which studies find have a lingering impact on college campuses.

The Cook County College Teachers Union called off a near 1,500 person strike after reaching a tentative agreement earlier this week.

The strike had been planned for Nov. 2 and would have disrupted class for nearly 77,000 students across seven college campuses as students continue to recover from ‘”learning loss” during the pandemic. 

[RELATED: Socialist students prepare to strike for abortion access on Oct. 6]

Georgetown University’s Edunomics Lab found that the average Chicago student lost the equivalent of about half a school’s year worth of learning between March 2020 and June 2021. Professors reported students were unprepared when they began college because of remote learning during their high school years.

The union reached a four-year agreement which included many of its original demands, which according to its GoFundMe page included “[r]educed class sizes,” “[m]ore remote learning and support services for students,” “[w]raparound services and true classroom investment,” “[f]air wage increases,” and “[a]ccess to affordable health insurance for part-time professionals.”

[RELATED: Union continues strike after rejecting university’s 4% salary increase]

In 2019, the Cook County College Teachers Union planned a strike that attracted support from the Chicago Party for Socialism and Liberation. The group brands itself as “a revolutionary Marxist organization.” 

The union also unveiled its partisan roots during the 2022 election after solely endorsing Democrat candidates. 

Campus Reform contacted the union, Georgetown University Edunomics Lab, and the Chicago Party for Socialism and Liberation for comment; this article will be updated accordingly.