Strike 5

I am a proud Chicagoan.

I know there are amazing cities all throughout the world but for me Chicago is the best, not because it’s better but because it’s home. I don’t agree with everything that happens in my city and I am certainly not proud of what’s going on between the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) and the Chicago Public Schools (CPS). I don’t know if any of you are aware of what’s going on but on Monday the teachers went on strike in hopes of getting a better contract, which is reasonable because CPS wants to extend their days without increase in pay.

I love teachers. They have all taught me valuable lessons that I still carry with me today. Some of my favorite people have been educators and it’s sad that in America, the land of the free and home of the brave, we cannot compensate our teachers for all the hard work they do. I commend every person who is an educator, I know your work doesn’t end when the school day ends. It is shameful what CPS is doing, an entire week of class was missed all because they couldn’t come into an agreement with the teachers union. In any other job, if you want me to work overtime, you pay me overtime. That’s all the teachers are asking for, fair pay and a reasonable way of measuring their effectiveness as an educator.

Here are the few things the teachers union is asking for (for the source click here):

  • Smaller class sizes.
  • More playgrounds, recess time and physical education classes.
  • More art, dance, theater, music and foreign language instruction.
  • More funding for libraries.
  • Healthier school lunches.
  • An end to the “apartheid-like” Chicago Public School system today and to “discipline policies with a disproportionate harm on students of color.”
  • Guarantee pre-K and full-day kindergarten for all students.
  • Higher teacher salaries and more teacher “autonomy.”
  • Better bilingual and special needs programs.
  • Higher-quality school facilities.

I don’t know about you but all these request sound reasonable. Chicago, we expect better from you. I stand behind every teacher. 

Happy Friday, hopefully children will be able to resume school on Monday.

-A

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