Chicago Teachers Union approves new contract with CPS

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CHICAGO — The Chicago Teachers Union has approved a contract its leaders negotiated with the Chicago Public Schools.

The union announced late Tuesday that more than 70 percent of its more than 27,000 members voted to accept the tentative agreement.

Union President Karen Lewis said that with the vote, teachers can now focus their energies on their students.

In a statement, schools CEO Forrest Claypool said that families now know their children will remain in school and continue their academic gains.

The four-year proposal negotiated last month averted a strike that would have affected about 390,000 students. It includes cost-of-living increases in the third and fourth years. It doesn’t require current teachers to pay more toward their pensions — a change Chicago Public Schools was seeking and the union rejected.