Parents in Chicago Want Their Say in Debate Over Longer School Day

Judy Hartnett's picture
Thursday, October 27, 2011

"How do we as parents get to the table?" That’s what parent and community organizer Carol Johnson wanted to know Tuesday night at a West Side forum that drew both supporters and skeptics of a longer day.

Caroline Bilicki, president of the PTA at Disney II Magnet Elementary, said her school should be a model for Chicago's system-wide effort to move to a longer day.

"They don't teach to the test ...They get music two times a week for an hour. They get art two times a week for an hour. They get technology...."

Disney II's longer day - and added staff to teach all the extras - is paid for by parent fundraising. But there were concerns the North Side magnet school isn't typical of schools in the system.

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