Chicago teachers' strike ends as students return to class

By Robert Kirchgassner ,

Schoolchildren in Chicago returned to school Wednesday, marking the end of a week-long strike by teachers.

USA Today reported that union delegates voted to suspend the strike Tuesday following a proposed contract settlement. This contract included concessions on proposed new teacher evaluations and recall rights for fired teachers.

"We said that we couldn't solve all the problems of the world with one contract, and it was time to end the strike," said Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis.

The strike affected nearly 350,000 students in the third-largest school district in the U.S. It also led some parents scrambling to find alternative schooling for their children.

Now, however, some are hoping the recent deal will prove beneficial.

"They'll win from the strike," said Leslie Sabbs-Kizer, in reference to her children of elementary school age.

However, teachers have yet to officially sign the new agreement, according to ABC News. Lewis said that it could be nearly two weeks before they do so.

But Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel is optimistic.

"This settlement is an honest compromise," he said. "It means returning our schools to their primary purpose: the education of our children. It means a new day and a new direction for Chicago public schools. In this contract we gave our children a seat at the table.”

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