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Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Chicago Public Schools will start the next school year with fully remote classes, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced Wednesday.

Why it matters: CPS is the third-largest public school district in the country, serving 361,000 students in over 600 schools. The move will likely avoid a possible strike from the city's teachers union, which had called for the school year to start remotely.

The big picture: The development comes amid a nationwide debate about how to proceed with K-12 learning in the midst of a pandemic. Only five of the nation's 25 largest school districts in the country are planning any sort of in-person learning, the New York Times notes.

  • New York City is the nation's only major school system that will attempt in-person classes.

What they're saying: The decision was rooted "in public health data and the invaluable feedback we've received from parents and families," Lightfoot said.

  • "A win for teachers, students and parents," Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey tweeted Tuesday. "It’s sad that we have to strike or threaten to strike to be heard, but when we fight we win!"

Go deeper: What a day at school looks like in a pandemic

Go deeper

Nov 12, 2020 - Health

Biden's Day 1 challenges: The coronavirus

Photo illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

The coronavirus is not only a life-or-death crisis that will be waiting for President-elect Joe Biden on Day One. It’s a crisis that will keep getting worse every day, making it harder and harder for a new administration to solve.

The big picture: The virus will not know there’s a new president. It will simply keep spreading, and killing people, until we stop it. The challenge of stopping it will be Biden’s first, most urgent order of business. And it will be incredibly difficult.

Nov 12, 2020 - Health

87-year-old Rep. Don Young tests positive for COVID

Young arrives for a news conference outside of the Capitol in March 2019. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call via Getty Images

Rep. Don Young (R-Alaska), the oldest member of Congress, tweeted Thursday that he has tested positive for COVID-19.

Why it matters: At 87 years old, Young is part of the age group at "greatest risk for severe illness from COVID-19," according to the CDC.

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
Nov 12, 2020 - Economy & Business

America's coronavirus complacency

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The long-feared autumn spike in coronavirus cases has arrived, both in Europe and in the U.S. — and there's a huge difference in how the two regions are reacting. Europe is on an emergency footing, while America ... isn't.

Why it matters: We've seen this movie before, and we've seen the need for coordinated government action, from public-health agencies to fiscal policy to monetary policy. That's happening in Europe. It's not happening here.