Teacher strike in Chicago keeps 350,000 kids out of schools


Chicago kids used computers at libraries because schools were closed by a strike. (Scott Olson/GETTY IMAGES)
September 12, 2012

Kids in Chicago, Illinois, didn’t go to school for the third day in a row on Wednesday. But no one — not parents, teachers or even the kids — seems happy about that.

About 350,000 public school students are out of the classroom because teachers are on strike.

In a labor strike, employees stop doing their jobs in protest over working conditions or what they’re paid. In this case, teachers are striking because of new rules on how they would be graded on their work in the classroom. Teachers worry they could be fired if students don’t perform well on standardized tests.

The city of Chicago says it has to have a way to make sure students are getting a better education. The city and teachers are talking (that’s called “negotiating”) but are still far from an agreement that would send kids and teachers back to school.

Meanwhile, even kids seemed unhappy about the time off. A 12-year-old boy spent one of the strike days at the public library. “I was bored at home. There was nothing to do there,” he told the Chicago Tribune.

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