Parent Perspectives on School Board Governance

I understand that our elected leaders have the challenge of meeting the needs of CPS while remaining accountable to the citizens of Chicago

By Claiborne Wade | March 25, 2021 |
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I understand that our elected leaders have the challenge of meeting the needs of CPS while remaining accountable to the citizens of Chicago. As a lifelong Chicagoan and former public school student, I strongly feel that my wife and I know what is best for our four children. It would not make sense for lawmakers to make decisions on behalf of our family without our input or addressing our concerns. Since it is our children who attend schools, CPS parents should have an equal seat at the table in determining what happens with the Board of Education. As our elected leaders prepare to make decisions about the future of the school board, they should be guided by what CPS parents want as well.

A representative board should guarantee a majority of parent-members with a diversity that reflects the demographics of the student body, not the city of Chicago. Over the long term, I would love to see a school board that resembles the structure of our LSCs -- with parent, community, teacher, and school leader representatives, with a heavy emphasis on parents. Until we can get to a long term vision, the majority of appointed board members should be current CPS parents. And it should be CPS parents who determine what that long term vision should be.

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