Is Chicago Bribing Parents To Do Their Job?
6 months ago
Chicago public schools offering $25 Walgreens cards for school visits.
Remember those days when you had to be bribed into getting good grades?
Don't front. You didn't care that you were getting D's and U's on your report card at first. But when they put free McDonald's French fries and extra PE time into the equation, getting A's and B's became a priority.
Fast forward a couple of generations later, it's not children who have to be bribed into getting good grades. Their parents, however? That's a different story.
The plight of Chicago's widely-reported failing school system may have hit its lowest point this year when teachers went on strike in September, not only postponing the start of the school year, but leaving 350,000 students with no classes for nearly two weeks. Teachers complained about wages, as well as voiced concerns about violence on campus and the lack of parental involvement.
In response to those complaints, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has engineered a program that he hopes will at least help solve one of them and potentially create a domino effect to knock out the others.
In what's being called a "public-private partnership," 70 Chicago public schools are partnering with Walgreens for a program where parents will be rewarded with $25 Walgreens "Balance Rewards" cards for coming to their child's school to personally pick up report cards and participate in PTA meetings.
[Also Read: Who Cares About The Kids Of Chi-Town?]
Just in case you didn't get that, the Chicago Public School system is using $25 Walgreens gift cards to lure (or bribe) parents to come to their child's school, pick up their report cards and talk to their teachers.
So all it takes for a parent to care about his or her own child's academic performance is a $25 gift card to use on deodorant, cough drops, a magazine and some Vitamin Water? Looks like it.