05 December 2012

The Great District 300 Strike of 2012

My kids school district went on strike yesterday. If we are to believe the comment forums on facebook and in local newspapers, it all started when the greedy teachers threw their students under the bus, demanding more money to feed their cushy lifestyle. And the evil Darth Schoolboard refused, because the kids are less important to them than their bloated reserves. Instead, they added new board members to chortle with in the cigar room, while the impoverished teachers stand outside in the cold asking, "Please Sirs, just an extra shilling to cover the supplies?" 

I think I am one of the few people in this town that can admit: I don't know the truth. I do know our district got screwed by the state out of millions of dollars, and by Hoffman Estates in the Sears Center debacle of last year. I do know both my girls' class sizes are quite large and there are no aides in either room this year. Their school day is shorter than it was a few years ago to save some money. I know the teachers and the schools made sacrifices. I can assume the board has as well. Whether the teachers were sticking on salary and pension increases alone seems to be the biggest source of controversy. And, as a parent, I simply don't know what happened.

What I do know is both parties want to come to an agreement that benefits both the kids and themselves. It's human nature. Everyone is a little greedy, parents included. I mean, we (the proverbial "we") want this excellent educational experience but don't want to pay for it or volunteer much.Everyone wants a good salary and less work. Likewise, you don't get into this field without caring about the kids and how to create a better school. I think both parties had their students in mind as they negotiated. I have decided not to take a side, only hope everyone can be satisfied and that enough money exists to meet everyone's needs. 

But who cares now, because it's already over. 

We got the call at 9:30PM last night that school was back on, just when I was hunkering down for the long haul with my craft kits and school worksheets... I'm glad everyone got what they wanted, but I'm kind of bummed because I was set to sleep in a little and instead I had to get up early this morning to make lunches. 

I am left with the final thought, "Really? All that vitriol for something that was obviously simple enough to hash out in a day?" Lame.

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