AP: Chicago schools announce cuts after union rejects offer

CHICAGO (AP) – Officials with Chicago Public Schools said Tuesday they’re ready to cut $100 million from school budgets and force teachers to pay more pension costs after their union rejected the latest contract offer, ratcheting up the tone of contentious negotiations that have lasted over a year.

Schools CEO Forrest Claypool called the union’s rejection “disheartening” and cost-cutting efforts – including potential layoffs of support staff like teachers’ aides – necessary without a deal. Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis shot back, calling the announcement the “latest act of war” and saying teachers in the nation’s third-largest district would protest this week.

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