We're days away from a possible teachers' strike in Chicago. One of the big pay issues that might still be on the table is so-called "step increases," which provide a guaranteed salary bump for some number of years after a teacher is initially hired.
I'm very grateful to the teachers who cherished my boy, but I want to drop the ladder back down and help every child, support every teacher, encourage every parent and remind the mayor that children are living through hell just trying to go to school.
The suits who run Chicago Public Schools never would have tried the stunts they recently pulled at Chicago's Social Justice High School had it been a largely white, middle-class school on the city's Northwest Side.
During the holiday-season toys are king, and Halloween is all about the candy, but going back-to-schools means new school supplies and a new fall wardrobe, including backpacks, sneakers, fall sweaters and winter coats.
As a taxpayer and a public school parent, I want to believe that some thoughtful analysis went into the decision to turn Roberto Clemente High School into a so-called International Baccalaureate high school.
Even though it isn't a panacea, we should move to an elected school board. Therefore, if the referendum gets on the ballot in your ward, vote for it. If it doesn't, push your state legislators to change the law in Springfield.
It troubles me to think that the teaching profession, which has traditionally been a gateway to the middle class for poor and working class children, is being scrapped to give temporary jobs to college graduates from elite institutions.
It seems that the mayor and the groups that carried his water over changing labor law are now unhappy with a process they once championed. It's time to stop playing games and work towards giving Chicago's students the schools they deserve.