As the Chicago Teachers Union strike heads into its second week, Chicago Public Schools student-athletes are the ones losing the most while union reps and city officials struggle to find middle ground. The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) by-laws prevent students from districts on strike from participating in sanctioned events, which is particularly punitive for fall sports athletes with regional and sectional tournaments in full swing.
It means no post-season play for CPS student-athletes, and that takes away a lot more than just the chance to become a state champion. It could—and will—mean lost scholarship opportunities for seniors hoping for one last chance to make an impression on college coaches and recruiters.
Some athletes and parents have gone as far as to file a lawsuit against the IHSA for the right to compete. In one lawsuit, the Jones College Prep cross-country team argues that the rule should be interpreted differently to allow runners to toe the line at the state championship meet in Peoria on November 9.
If the strike doesn’t end by Tuesday night, CPS football teams that are eligible are the state playoffs by winning five regular season games will not be seeded for the first round of the state playoffs, which begin this weekend.
Today marks the 11th day of the strike. According to ABC7, CTU reps said there’s still a $38 million gap between the teacher’s demands and the city’s proposal.