Our children are the future?

Reading about this Chicago Teacher’s Union (CTU) strike makes me upset. From my general understanding the teachers are fed up with teaching conditions such as overcrowding and not enough teaching supplies/books. Correct me if I’m wrong.

Yesterday one of the nation’s largest school districts went on strike. The goal of a school system is to educate children. Regardless of the outcome of this strike the biggest loser here are the children. We have failed them. They have been caught in the crossfire of adult issues. I understand that teachers need and want more to educate these children but this is not the answer and the real issue is being circumvented.

In a city that is being plagued by violence and a higher than average rate of teen murders having children not in school is alarming. A lot of parents who use school as a means to store their children in a safe place while they work will have to find an alternative. Parents who use the school system as a means to feed their children two meals a day will have to find another way to feed their children.

While we’re on the subject of parents (although I’m not one) I know that they are not completely absolved in this situation. Chicago is a microcosm of what is occurring nationwide. Teachers are educators, parents, counselors and nurses all at the same time. They shouldn’t be charged with being the main influence and teacher in a child’s life. That responsibility falls squarely on the shoulders of parents. If anything the job of a parent should be supplemented by teachers. Parents should be invested in their child’s future. In my opinion parents across America are failing miserably at this job as well.

I also blame (don’t worry there’s enough blame to go around) our government. With budget cuts at the local and state levels quality teachers are forced to do their job (a significant one at that) on meager salaries. This pressures teachers into other professions and leaves a lot of students on the hands of under qualified and/or unmotivated educators. I saw a quote somewhere yesterday that said “85% of teachers are women. No wonder the profession is under valued.”

Although the children are the biggest losers here they are not all free of blame. You can’t teach a person who isn’t motivated to learn. Perhaps I’m from a different generation but I enjoyed learned. I didn’t always like everything about school but I still yearned to know more.

I hope that this teacher’s strike can be resolved soon because after all the children are our future, aren’t they? As a person who is interested in making a career change to education situations like this don’t deter me, they only strengthen my resolve to change things.


8 thoughts on “Our children are the future?

  1. Brooke Holmes

    As simple as this is you would think that we would get it by now. I am in total agreement with everything that you’ve said here. I have always said that it never makes sense to me how educators train us and then get paid less than us. We should be giving them so much more respect than that. This brings us right back to politics and the election. We seriously need to get out and vote. As you correctly stated, our children are our future and we need to invest much more in them. One way to help that is to get the right people in office that will make them a priority.

  2. gemmieboo

    grezt post. so many horrible things going on in Chicago right now. the city is falling apart. – first with the shootings, now with the teachers (teachers!) strike. theres no telling what else is about to reach its tipping point.

    i guess all we outsiders can do is pray. pray that the city puts a priority on its citizens. pray they come to some resolve that benefits everyone – teachers, students, community. EVERYONE benefits from happy/productive teachers and educated students.

    the school strike doesnt just affect children, it affects the entire city. namely the parents (as you mentioned), but the greater community will have to pay. hell, they are literally paying for kids not to learn, teachers not to teach. and think of the state of affairs that had to set this off. shit has to be real bad for teachers to say its worth more to send message than to not teach our children (who probably havent been learning what they need to learn for some time).

    i guess we should also pray that this doesnt start occuring all over the country. because Chicago cant be the only city where teachers just arent receiving the compensation AND support they need.


    1. madscientist7 Post author

      sad thing is i know a lot of public school teachers and i see the same thing happening in a lot of different cities. i’ve seen a lot of people take shots at the teachers saying that they don’t have the children’s best interest in mind. i won’t put the blame completely on them because i know how hard it is being a teacher.

  3. The Suburban Thug

    Man. I gotta agree with most of this. A lot of what is going on in the Chicago school system is happening nationwide, but the Chicago teachers upped the ante. Many of the school systems in predominantly urban (read: minority) areas are having to do more with less. As parents move away form these areas, the tax bases decrease, which mean less money for everything, including schools. Yet, the part of society that can least afford the cuts gets cut the most. So the teachers are fed up with having to continually do more with less. Couple this with the teachers feeling like they’re not being paid enough, and a perfect storm existed for the strike to occur.

    I don’t necessarily agree with teachers striking, but the issues they are fighting for are symptomatic of a larger problem. When the bigger issue gets resolved, then perhaps the CTU and other unions will not be so quick to make moves, such as striking. Also, the entities who can least afford to be affected this game of chicken, the students, can get what they rightfully deserve; a satisfactory education.

  4. Wu Young, Agent of M.E.

    Man, the kids are taking a massive L on this one. I get the point of each side but this needs to be hashed out while the kids are still in class. Many of these kids in Chicago can’t afford to miss school because they would fall further behind. What’s worse is that many of these kids will miss meals because a lot of students get their meals via the school system.

    1. madscientist7 Post author

      this is kind of making me fear for the quality of education of my future children. i want them to attend pubic schools but the way things are going they’lll be in private schools.


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