Thousands of Chicago teachers walked off the job Monday for the first time in 25 years, after union leaders announced they were far from resolving a contract dispute with school district officials, the Associated Press reports. The walkout in the nation's third-largest school district posed a tricky test for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who said he would work to end the strike quickly.

"This is not a strike I wanted," Emanuel said Sunday night, not long after the union announced the action. "It was a strike of choice ... it's unnecessary, it's avoidable and it's wrong."

Some 26,000 teachers and support staff were...

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    staff and wire services reports