Tuesday, June 26, 2007

School Days

Each day I sit at my desk trying to decide what work to do, trying to decide what news to pay attention to, trying to decide what to write in my blog.

This morning on NPR there was a story about an African family that are living as refugees in Wilmette. The couple had 12 or 13 children, and the oldest four are of high school age but don't have the education to attend regular classes at New Trier. So NT, being the school that it is, hired a tutor for these four children. On one hand it was a story of hope to a family that had survived a civil war and are struggling to make a better life for themselves. On the other hand, it just pointed out the gross disparity between our classes in this country. Less that 20 miles apart are two neighborhoods so wildly different it's unreal. In Wilmette they have the resources to send 12 children to public schools and hire a tutor for them so they can learn the language and get up to speed in their other studies. In my neighborhood (which is by no means the poorest neighborhood in the city), the public schools struggle to stay afloat and graduate students who will go on to college. I'm not saying that those who live in Wilmette, or any other affluent community, shouldn't have the right to give their children an exemplary education. I just have a hard time reconciling that with the children in the cities and poor communities who barely have a chance at any sort of education. I guess I see why people move to the suburbs when they have kids.

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