As the Chicago teachers’ strike continues, let's review what we've learned, no thanks to the broadcast media, which downplayed the story. We know that on average Windy City educators make $71-76,000 a year and they've turned down a 16 percent pay increase, which amounts to $11,360. We know that they contribute only a tiny sliver of their pay, 3 percent, to their retirement package, and we know, because the media keep insisting on this, that teacher evaluations are supposedly the major sticking point in negotiations.
But here's statistic that's not getting much coverage is the percentage who sent their children to private schools, a figure which both underscore the excellent pay package as well as the teachers' lack of faith in their own public system, as John Stossel of Fox Business noted on September 11:
Union teachers know that many of their colleagues aren't great teachers. Only 12% of American students attend private schools, but, 39% of Chicago public school teachers send their children to private schools. Anti school-choice politicians are no less hypocritical: President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Jesse Jackson, Hillary Clinton and Al Gore (to name just a few) all send or sent their children to private schools.
Now thousands of Chicago children are kept out of school. Your supermarkets and movie theaters aren't closed because of strikes. That's because private companies have competition. Government monopolies don't.
Another troubling but underreported statistic is that Chicago has incredibly short school days, according to the Illinois Policy Institute.
These are important things for the public at-large to know, but reporting on them would require the liberal media to report factual information that doesn't cast the public sector unions it sympathizes with in a good light.