09/10/2012 01:10 pm ET Updated Sep 10, 2012

Chicago Teachers On Strike, Hit The Picket Line On Historic Walkout's First Day (PHOTOS, VIDEO)

Chicago teachers hit the picket lines as the city's first strike in 25 years began Monday.

Early Monday, in the city's Edgewater neighborhood, teachers and their supporters hit the streets outside Pierce Elementary School and sang, "You can't scare me, I'm sticking to the union." (Watch the video and follow live updates on the teachers strike below.)

Later in the morning, some 40 teachers, parents and other supporters rallied near Darwin Elementary School, waving their signs for drivers passing by along busy Fullerton Avenue.

Striking teachers told HuffPost Chicago they hoped the union and school board will arrive at a consensus soon so that they can return to the classroom.

A half-mile west, dozens more striking teachers -- holding signs they had gathered together to create the previous evening -- rallied on Fullerton, near Goethe Elementary School. The playground adjacent to the school was silent but for the sound of horn honking from from supportive drivers.

Thousands of teachers in the nation's third-largest school district walked off the job Monday on the heels of a months-long standoff between the teachers union and the school district. The strike impacts nearly 400,000 students who are now shut out of their classrooms just one week into the new academic year.

On Sunday evening, Mayor Rahm Emanuel criticized the walkout as "a strike of choice ... it's unnecessary, it's avoidable and it's wrong."

GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Monday condemned the teachers strike, feedback that Emanuel dismissed later Monday.

The teachers union and the board of education returned to the negotiating table Monday morning. As of the early evening, no updates were announced in those talks.

Among the issues that remain on the table are teachers' job security, performance evaluations, salary and benefits.

Out on the picket line? Submit your photos and video below.



09/18/2012 7:38 PM EDT

Brizard Speaks Briefly

@ bylaurenfitz :

Jean-Claude Brizard is "overjoyed kids are heading back to school tomorrow morning."

This will likely be the final update to this live blog Tuesday.

09/18/2012 7:36 PM EDT

Rahm: Kids Lost 'Vitality' Amid Ongoing Strike

@ MaryAnnAhernNBC :

MRE says the school fight - its personal - loss of vitality from some he meets - "the classroom is where they learn" #CTUstrikeover

09/18/2012 7:34 PM EDT

90 Percent Voted To End Strike

@ CatalystChicago :

Delegate Jay Rau says abt 90% of teachers voted to end strike. #ctustrike

09/18/2012 7:31 PM EDT

Meaningful Teacher Evaluations

@ ChicagosMayor :

"For the first time, teachers will have a meaningful evaluation based on a system based and designed by their fellow teachers." - MRE

09/18/2012 7:29 PM EDT

No Questions Tonight

@ MaryAnnAhernNBC :

MRE no questions tonight, will tomorrow #CTUstrikeover #RahmChicago

09/18/2012 7:27 PM EDT

Check Out The Couplets

@ bylaurenfitz :

"Math AND music. Science AND sports." MRE loves these couplets.

09/18/2012 7:27 PM EDT

'An Honest Compromise'

@ chicagotribune :

Emanuel: 'This settlement is an honest compromise'

09/18/2012 7:11 PM EDT

Back To School, Back To Packing Lunches

@ thebkwyrm :

Packing lunch for kindergartener, SO grateful she's going back to school. Note: was in support of teachers. #ctustrike #ctustrikeisover

09/18/2012 7:09 PM EDT

Contract Not Necessarily Accepted

@ SocialistViews :

The CTU vote is not an acceptance or necessarily an endorsement of the contract. #CTUstrike

09/18/2012 7:00 PM EDT

A National Issue

@ WBEZeducation :

Lewis: this strike became a national issue because the reforms are being pushed nationally #CTUstrike

Chicago Teachers Strike