Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Chicago school-funding protest spurs unexpected friendship

Another item on the educational beat from the Trib:
With grins and a familiar nod, a dozen teenagers came together this weekend for what has become a standing date since nearly 1,000 Chicago students skipped classes and tried to enroll in two North Shore schools to protest the financial disparity in Illinois public education.

Students from New Trier High School and several South Side schools have met weekly in a quiet corner of a Chicago library to chip away at the funding predicament that has stymied Illinois lawmakers for years.

They dubbed themselves the Illinois Council of Students, recruited peers to the cause and created an online presence to drum up interest.

And along the way, they became friends.

"From the moment we shook hands, we hit it off," Morgan Park High School senior Brandon Saunders said of New Trier senior Matt McCambridge. They met during the rally that followed the Sept. 2 boycott led by state Sen. James Meeks (D-Chicago). "That night, we were on Facebook talking and everything."

The students recognize theirs is an improbable friendship, an unexpected outcome of an adult-led political action. They say such an unlikely beginning makes them determined to guard their personal ties and to add their voices to talks of how money is divided among Illinois schools. Students in the Harold Washington Library Center Sunday debated what role to assign adult advisers.

"Adults have worked on this for so long. But students have never worked on it really at all. So we hope . . . students coming in and saying we really do need a better education system will have an impact," said McCambridge, the council president.
I hope that they can consider not only the funding of public school, but other issues that are just as important such as for instance accountability. I would expect no one would want to throw money at any school district that fails to get their job done educating students. That has to be a very important issue.

No comments:

Post a Comment

PLEASE READ FIRST!!!! Comment Moderating and Anonymous Comment Policy

While anonymous comments are not prohibited we do encourage you to help readers identify you so that other commenters may respond to you. Either read the moderating policy for how or leave an identifier (which could be a nickname for example) at the end of the comment.

Also note that this blog is NOT associated with any public or political officials including Alderman Roderick T. Sawyer!