Sheryl D., has lived in Chicago since 1972, and is the mother of one daughter and one son. Both her daughter, Sherri, and son Stephen were students of Skinner Elementary School and Whitney Young Magnet High School.
Stephen recently graduated from Georgetown with a masters in Finance and her daughter is entering her final year in college. Ever since her children were young, Sheryl took every opportunity to expand their minds. From trips to the museum to playing BrainQuest on the car ride homes, she did her best to ensure that her kids would be ready to excel in the classroom.
When she was looking for schools, location wasn’t the most important factor to Sheryl. When Sheryl and her husband were looking for schools, they looked for the best school that her children could get into based on test scores and other information provided.
She says. “I was going to drive them to wherever the school was. I changed jobs to be closer to the school.” Her ability to change jobs meant that her children weren’t forced to take the CTA to school when they were young.
While location was not a primary factor in choosing a school, extracurricular activities were. When deciding which school would be a good fit for her children, she wanted to be assured that her kids had many extracurricular opportunities available to them. For Sheryl a good education includes the ability to learn music, make art, and have the space to run around.
Sheryl was incredibly happy with the education her children received. They were well prepared for college when the time came and they had a lot great opportunities to grow. However, Sheryl knows how difficult it is to get into schools like Skinner and Whitney Young. “We were lucky to get in there, but there are a lot of kids who would have benefitted who weren’t so lucky.”
She thinks that schools needs to be funded better “so that every time we turn around teachers aren’t threatening to go on strike.” Sheryl understands that high-quality teachers make a real difference.