As if it wasn’t already difficult to obtain your degrees, now Chicago students have to have a job or other requirements to officially graduate high school.
That’s right. According to the Washington Post, the Chicago Public School system has officially made it a requirement to either have a job, college acceptance letter, gap-year program enrollment or military enlistment, in order to graduate high school.
The person who has made this possible, Mayor Rahm Emanuel, is the same reason why critics believe the new requirements won’t be successful, especially in lieu of inadequate resources.
According to the Chicago Tribune, Emanuel failed to search for new revenue streams, delayed payments to teacher pensions, and did not commit to the duties Chicago mayors hold over the district, resulting in 1,000 teachers and staff members being laid off.
Therefore, CPS was put in a predicament where they almost had no choice but to implement this requirement that those like, Karen Lewis of the Chicago Teachers Union, feel will force children into even more poverty.
“It sounds good on paper, but the problem is that when you’ve cut the number of counselors in schools, when you’ve cut the kind of services that kids need, who is going to do this work?” said Lewis. “If you’ve done the work to earn a diploma, then you should get a diploma. Because if you don’t, you are forcing kids into more poverty.”
The Chicago Tribune also reported that all CPS students have the opportunity to attend City Colleges of Chicago community college system with guaranteed admission.
However, this is also setting kids up for failure as city colleges are also having financial issues, and an increase in prospective students actually applying will be hardly manageable.
“The City Colleges system has continued to struggle with “softened” enrollment numbers, as the system also looks at burning cash reserves and making cuts because of the state’s protracted budget impasse.
At the same time, the system has said it has seen larger numbers of incoming students “without the required academic preparation,” which has led to higher demand for remedial courses and support services.”
Sounds like something Donald Trump would have done first, if he had control, but the Chicago mayor beat him to it…