Teachers in the Chicago Teachers Union are on strike starting Monday September 10. After a weekend of unsuccessful contract negotiations, the Chicago Teachers Union has decided to go on a labor strike where more than 400,000 students attend 675 schools.
Chicago Teachers Union President, Karen Lewis said to NBC News, "We have failed to reach an agreement that will prevent a labor strike."
The strike follows more than a year of negotiations over salary, job security and health benefits after the school board canceled the teacher's 4 percent pay increase in the last year of their contract.
Chicago Public Schools have kept 144 schools peon from 8:30 to 12:30 p.m but many school children will be left without teachers.
School Board President David Vitale said that the teachers had been given 20 offers throughout negotiations to prevent the strike from happening.
"There's only so much money in the system ... There's only so many things we can do that are available to us that we actually believe will not hurt the educational agenda that we think is best for our children," he said to NBC News.
Vitale added that the deal the union put on the table would cost the city $400 million and cover four years.
More than 26,000 teachers and staff are on strike starting Monday. For now nearly 150 schools will be open for half days as well as 60 churches and both the Chicago Park District and YMCA will offer day camps.
Talks are set to continue during the strike but no time has been scheduled as of yet to when the union and the school board will meet.
There has not been a strike in the Chicago Public School District for nearly 25 years. In 1987, teacher's striked for 19 days and prior to that, nine strikes occurred between 1969 and 1987.