New parent group forms in wake of teachers strike - FOX 32 News Chicago

New parent group forms in wake of teachers strike

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The teachers' strike in the nation's third-largest district has led to the creation of at least one parents' group.

Two parents say they started Chicago Students First because they were frustrated by watching the strike, which has lasted five days so far.

Parent Christina Shaver says the network will get parents off the sidelines on important issues and into the discussion about what affects their children. The group's website will feature a blog and surveys.

"We created Chicago Students First because we realized, as a result of the strike, that communications were limited to individual school communities," Shaver said in a release. "There was no way to collaborate with parents of kids attending CPS schools throughout the city. We want all parents to join voices with each other to provide data -- or a pulse -- for those who are making decisions on behalf of our children."

In an open letter posted on their website, the group called on Chicago Public Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard and Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis to include parents in the decision-making process on educational initiatives.

Brizard responded, saying, "I look forward to working with you," while Lewis requested the group block her email address from any future mailings.

The announcement of the newly-formed group came Sunday as delegates with the Chicago Teachers Union met to consider the latest proposal from the school district.

The strike has left some 350,000 students out of school since Monday.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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