Strike: Week 2

No school until Wednesday at the earliest. Parents, we know these are challenging times. 

It is understandable that those of us with children in Chicago Public Schools would like teachers to grab the contract offered and run. It would make our lives as parents much easier. The confusing- indeed vexing - part of this situation is that while the negotiators at the table have been living with the language of the contract, the delegates just received its 300-plus pages today. They say they need to read it over before they vote on it. Taking a step back, it appears the delegates are doing what all of us do before we sign our names to something- they are trying to understand the terms. Let's hope they are devoting every minute possible to this task because parents are stretched.

Even with this understanding, it is hard not to be frustrated that our children will be out of school for another couple of days. Legal contracts are for adults to figure out. No one under age eighteen can enter into one. This has always been a situation created by adults, and yet it is our children, OUR children, who must wait while the adults figure out what they are going to do. 

While Raise Your Hand can understand from a cerebral perspective all sides why this strike is continuing, we are also frustrated, angry, sad, worried, anxious and strike weary. We are parents of CPS students. We want the CTU and CPS to put forth every effort to reach an agreement as soon as possible.

We think there are a lot of lines being blurred about what our children all deserve and what's fiscally possible right now. We are and continue to be very concerned about long-term sustainable funding for our district. And as we've been saying for a few weeks, many things that ail public education cannot be solved in this contract.

In the meantime, we feel it is important to acknowledge that even among parents, there can be many points of view at this extremely stressful and tense time in our lives and the lives of our children. It is critical that we continue to be respectful and helpful to each other as parents, as we find ourselves ever more frustrated and fatigued with this collective bargaining process. We are after all, in this together. Don't let the situation we are in break up the communities you have built between parents and teachers at your individual schools for years. Also know that it's okay to have questions and concerns and feelings about this - and still appreciate and respect your teachers. 

Meet us at Gannon’s Pub in Lincoln Square Tuesday night to discuss.

Tuesday 9/18

Gannon’s Pub –

4264 N. Lincoln