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No Teachers Strike; Classes As Usual For Chicago Public Schools Students

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A tentative contract was reached between the Chicago Teachers Union and the Chicago Public Schools. But just in case things didn’t work out, stacks of picket signs were ready for pick-up outside the union’s strike headquarters on Monday.

Charles Rex Arbogast/AP

Teachers in the Chicago Public Schools, the nation’s third-largest school district, had been working without a contract since June 2015, and they were prepared to strike.

The Chicago Teachers Union had told its some 28,000 members to report to the lines Tuesday morning — unless plans changed.

But negotiators reached a tentative contract agreement minutes before a midnight deadline. Talks had been taking place throughout the holiday weekend.

The last time Chicago teachers walked off the job was in 2012, and that strike lasted for seven school days.

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Education

Grad Students Win Right to Unionize in an Ivy League Case

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Columbia University’s quad. Credit Karsten Moran for The New York Times

Punctuating a string of Obama-era moves to shore up labor rights and expand protections for workers, the National Labor Relations Board ruled Tuesday that students who work as teaching and research assistants at private universities have a federally backed right to unionize.

The case arose from a petition filed by a group of graduate students at Columbia University, who are seeking to win recognition for a union that will join the United Automobile Workers and allow them a say over such issues as the quality of their health insurance and the timeliness of stipend payments.

Echoing longstanding complaints from blue-collar workers that they have become replaceable cogs in a globalized economic machine, the effort reflects a growing view among more highly educated employees in recent decades that they, too, are at the mercy of faceless organizations and are not being treated like professionals and aspiring professionals whose opinions are worthy of respect.

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Education

Why Summer Jobs Don’t Pay Off Anymore

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Why can’t kids today just work their way through college the way earlier generations did?

The answer to that question isn’t psychology. It’s math. A summer job just doesn’t have the purchasing power it used to, especially when you compare it with the cost of college.

Let’s take the example of a working-class student at a four-year public university who’s getting no help from Mom and Dad. In 1981-82, the average full cost to attend was $2,870. That’s for tuition, fees and room and board.

The maximum Pell Grant award back then for free tuition help from the government was $1,800. That leaves our hypothetical student on the hook for just about $1,000. Add in a little pocket money, too — say $35 a week. That makes an extra $1,820 for the year on top of the $1,000 tuition shortfall.

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Education

Why High School Students Need More Than College Prep

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I step up to the counter at Willy’s Cafe at Willamette High School in Eugene, Ore., and order a latte.

There’s a powerful scent of fresh coffee in the air, and a group of juniors and seniors hover over a large espresso machine.

Carrie Gilbert, 17, shows how it’s done: “You’re going to want to steam the milk first,” she explains. “Then once you have the coffee, dump it in and use the rest of the milk to fill the cup.”

She hands over my order. Not bad.

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Education

Fact-Check: Bernie Sanders Promises Free College. Will It Work?

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Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks during a town hall at the University of South Carolina. Sanders promotes the idea of free college education for all.

Evan Vucci/AP

Since he first announced his presidential campaign, Bernie Sanders has stuck to one simple promise. One that has many young people, in particular, #feelingthebern: free college.

As Sanders put it in his New Hampshire victory speech: “When we need the best-educated workforce in the world, yes, we are going to make public colleges and universities tuition-free.”

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Education

4 steps to successfully navigate career change

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As I finished reading a recent article in The Guardian about the changing nature of our careers, I leaned back in my chair and began to reflect on my recent past and path.

I’ve had the unique opportunity to play professional football, work in a church ministry, be a head football coach in a public school system, work in corporate America, and own my own business. Across all those valuable experiences, one thing has been constant — change. Whether it was the pain of the door closing on my dream of playing professional football or the uncertainty of having five managers in three years, the ability to successfully navigate career change is simply non-negotiable for today’s leader.

It’s difficult to acknowledge and admit, but there simply is no job we can do or no role we have forever. Career change will happen. And how well a leader navigates these challenging transitions will go a long way to determining his or her success, and the success of the organization he or she serves.

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