Teachers Strike: No School, Where to Send Your Children – UPDATED

By Mike Fourcher | Monday, September 10, 2012

Lane Tech teachers on an informational picket last week on Western Ave. Credit: Mike Fourcher

The Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools board failed to reach agreement on terms of a new contract, resulting in the first teachers strike in 25 years. No instruction will take place at any CPS school today.

Though CPS has opened 144 schools to provide half-day supervision for the district’s neediest students, parents are being encouraged to find alternate arrangements for their children. We’ve identified a number of options and will continue to update this list as information becomes available:

  • Raise Your Hand has aggregated a number of programs. The organization is also operating a “strike camp” at Luther Memorial Church, 2500 W. Wilson.
  • Chase, Welles, River and Horner Parks are running day camps, 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
  • Josh Kalov has put together this impressive and useful map of alternative student programs throughout the city.
  • Young Chicago Authors is opening its doors to 6th-12th graders.
  • Source 4 Chicago, a collaboration of four of Chicago’s most popular enrichment programs, will offer a week-long full day multi-disciplinary camp for children in K-6th grades at multiple locations throughout Chicago at a special weekly rate of $175. More info at www.source4chicago.com
  • The Youth Guidance team from Ravenswood School will offer Before- and After-School Adventures (BASA) programming from All Saints’ Episcopal Church at Wilson and Hermitage. While the strike is underway, childcare will be available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 3:30p.m. at a cost of $40/day. Extended care (until 6:30 p.m.) is available all days except Tuesdays, for an additional $20/day. Enter through the doors at 1757 W. Wilson Ave. Space is limited. Students should bring a lunch. For more info, email yg.basa@gmail.com  or afarajpanahi@youth-guidance.org.
  • Lookingglass Theatre Company is offering day-to-day drama workshop programs, based on its renowned summer camps, for children ages 5-13.  Workshops, featuring arts exploration activities ranging from storytelling to physical theatre, will run daily from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. and will cost $65 per day. Rates will be charged on a per day basis.  All drama workshops will take place in Lookingglass’ classroom and rehearsal room, located in Lookingglass’ administrative offices at the John Hancock Building, 875 N. Michigan Ave. More info and registration are available online.
  • Smarty Party, located on Wolcott & Belmont across from Jahn Elementary and operated by a former CPS teacher, is holding a special day camp for CPS kids.
  • Chicago Children’s Museum is offering free admission to all CPS students from September 10-14.
  • Cook County Comm. John Fritchey is providing parents and their kids free tickets to the County-operated Brookfield Zoo. (312) 603-6380
  • NEW: Court Theatre is offering a special free performance of August Wilson’s Jitney for any CPS student (and one parent/guardian) with a valid CPS ID. This free matinee will be Thursday, September 13, 2012 at 10:30 a.m. (assuming teachers still on strike) at Court Theatre, 5535 S. Ellis Ave. There is no need to RSVP, simply present a valid CPS ID at the theater.

If you know of a program to add to this list, please share with us in the comments below.

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