Read more in the full letter from CPS CEO Forrest Claypool and Chief Education Officer Janice Jackson.
Dear CPS Families,
As you know, this has been a hard year for our district. While we celebrate the continued achievement of our students, the state of our budget remains a constant challenge.
We have made important progress towards repairing our finances, making more than $120 million in budget cuts this year. However, these cuts alone do not provide us with the resources we need to keep our doors open and pay for critical capital repairs for the remainder of the school year.
For this reason, yesterday we announced that all CPS employees will be impacted by three furlough days between now and June 30th, 2016 — though only one of these days will affect students. The decision to furlough employees was not easy, but was a necessary one.
Here’s what this means for you and your student(s):
Friday, March 25th, (Good Friday), which was scheduled to be a regular attendance day for all students, will now be a furlough day for all CPS employees — classes will be cancelled, and schools will be closed. This is the only day that will impact students, and they should not report to school on this day.
We’ve worked hard to minimize the effects of the furlough days on you and your student(s); dates were chosen because absences of staff and students are expected to be significantly higher, or classes were already planned to be out of session for the day.
While we regret the loss of learning time our students and the inconvenience this may cause our families, this furlough day – in addition to other furlough days which impact staff, but not students – will provide our District with $30 million in financial relief.
Please know that we remain committed to reaching a long-term financial solution that is in the best interest of our teachers, our taxpayers, and most importantly, our children. We continue to negotiate in good faith with the Chicago Teachers Union, and to pressure our leaders in Springfield to provide Chicago’s children with the equal funding they deserve.
We will continue to provide updates as developments occur, and remain grateful for your continued support.
Chief Executive Officer Chief Education Officer