Chicago Mayor Richard Daley has asked the Chicago Teachers Union for longer school days. Daley noted that the hours between 2:30 and 5:00 pm are the most dangerous for children.
Daley has long sought to abolish summer vacations, calling them an anachronism from America’s agricultural past. Now he is taking aim at the school day’s length. Chicago students spend 40 fewer days per year in school than New York students, and the Chicago school week is only 30 hours long.
A teachers’ union spokesperson responded that the mayor should hire more social workers, counselors and school psychologists to help teachers cope with the many social problems children bring to school with them.
The city and union are currently in negotiations on a new contract.