Here’s where your kids can go during CPS teachers strike

CHICAGO — As the teachers strike begins Thursday for Chicago Public Schools, there are many child care resources available for parents.

If your child needs a safe place to go during the strike, CPS has a safe place site locator for parents.

All CPS school buildings will be open during the normal school day. Students who need a safe place to go are encouraged to attend their regular school, but will be welcomed at any CPS school that is age appropriate. More on CPS's contingency plan can be found here.

Parents are encouraged to register their child online for the duration of the potential strike. While not mandatory, it helps ensure the district has enough staff and meals to serve each child. All CPS schools will serve breakfast and lunch to students.

School transportation services will not be available to for students during the potential strike.

All after school activities, including sports, tutoring and field trips, will be canceled.

According to Raise Your Hand for Illinois Public Education, there are many additional options for child care around the city during the potential strike:

YMCA

The YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago, which offered day camps during charter school strikes last school year, will offer a first-come, first-serve Schools Day Out program, which lets families drop off children from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 10 locations citywide. Costs depend on location and hours served.

Salvation Army
Salvation Army is prepared to assist CPS families during the teachers’ strike. There are three sites ready to provide programming for children during school days, they are:

  • Freedom Center
    825 N. Christiana Ave.
    Chicago
    9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
    Regular after-school program available from 4:00-7:30 p.m.
    Will serve light breakfast, lunch, snack (as well as dinner for those who stay until 7:30 p.m.)
    Free
  • Chicago Lawn Corps
    5950 S. Spaulding Ave.
    Chicago
    9:00 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
    Will serve lunch
    Can accommodate as many as 50 children
    Free
  • Kroc Center
    1250 W. 119th St.
    Chicago
    8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
    $15 daily charge, $50 weekly per child
    Before-school care will be offered from 6:00-8:00 a.m. for an extra $20
    After-school care will be offered from 3:00-6:00 p.m. for an extra $20
    Will serve lunch and snack
    Can accommodate up to 200 children

Albany Park Community Center

The Albany Park Community Center can care for around 100 children, up to age 12, at its site.  The cost for families is $25 a day.

The Jewish Community Center of Chicago

The Jewish Community Center of Chicago is planning strike-day camps that include an International Day and a Star Wars-themed day. The costs are $80 for 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. camps, and $20 for aftercare.

Beverly Arts Center

The Beverly Arts Center’s “If CPS Strikes, We Have Your BAC-k Camp,” which would run from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily at a cost of $38 for members and $42 for non-members (scholarships will be available).

Hyde Park Neighborhood Club

Your Solution for CPS Strike Days - HPNC Care Camp. K-8; It runs from 8 a.m. to 4p.m with after care available until 6:30 p.m. Pre-Registration is required. First come, first serve.

Neighborhood Boys & Girls Club

NBGC will be open for youth from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday for as long as a strike lasts. All families enrolled full time in NBGC's after-school program will have a fee of $20 per day. All families not enrolled in NBGC's after school program will have a fee of $60 per day. Financial assistance is available.

Kids Science Labs

Kids Science Labs is offering CPS Strike Camp at two locations in Lincoln Park and the South Loop from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.  See web page for costs.

Chicago Public Libraries

The Chicago Public Library system has more than 70 branches across the city. In the event of a strike, the library will offer more children’s activities, but no details have been given yet.

Chicago Park District

The Chicago Park District will open 18 fieldhouses with regular hours. Patrons will be able to engage in drop-in and low-organized activities including open gym and fitness center use.  Non-staffed parks, the Chicago lakefront, playgrounds and outdoor nature areas will be open, as usual.

  • Rosedale Park, 6312 W Rosedale Ave.
  • Margate Park, 4321 N Marine Drive 
  • Riis Park, 6100 W Fullerton Ave.                                   
  • Gompers Park, 4222 W Foster Ave.
  • Hamlin Park, 3035 N Hoyne Ave.
  • Warren Park, 6601 N Western Ave.             
  • Taylor Park, 39 W 47th St.
  • Dvorak Park, 1119 W Cullerton St.
  • Columbus Park , 500 S Central Ave.
  • McKinley Park, 2210 W Pershing Rd.
  • Archer Park, 4901 S Kilbourn Ave.
  • Humboldt Park, 1400 N Humboldt Dr.
  • Washington Park, 5531 S MLK Dr.
  • Hamilton Park,  513 W 72nd St.            
  • Ridge Park, 9625 S Longwood Dr.
  • West Lawn Park, 4233 W 65th St.                                   
  • Trumbull Park, 2400 E 105th St.        
  • South Shore Cultural Center, 7059 S South Shore Dr.

By The Hand Club For Kids

By The Hand will provide breakfast, academic and spiritual enrichment time in the mornings, lunch, activities, community service projects, eye and dental care and even a field trip at some locations in the afternoons before being given transportation home.

It will open its doors at 9 a.m. until 5 p.m., providing transportation to and from the centers in Cabrini-Green, 1000 N. Sedgwick St., Austin, 415 N. Laramie Ave., Englewood, 838 W, Marquette Rd., and Altgeld-Gardens, 13015 S. Ellis Ave.

Codeverse

Should a strike occur, Codeverse will offer coding classes and day camps for kids (Grades 1-8). Day camps will be available from 9 a.m. -3 p.m. (with complimentary early drop off and pick up at 7 a.m. and 4 p.m.) which include healthy lunch, drinks and snacks. $100/full day camp. (Usually priced $150) Half day camps are also available.

The Wishcraft Workshop

Wishcraft will provide day camp packages for kids ages 5-12 and leadership camp for ages 13+ during the strike. After-care will be made available through 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. early drop-off. One day camp packages are available for purchase, as well as a 5-day package.

University of Chicago

U of C's Admissions Office is offering free workshops for CPS high school junior and seniors on essay writing and applying for financial aid. Following the sessions, Chicago-based College Advising Corps advisers will be on hand to answer questions one-on-one. The essay writing workshop will be held at 10 a.m. Thursday, and the financial aid workshop will be held at 10 a.m. Monday.

If CPS and CTU do not come to an agreement by Thursday, Oct. 17, the strike will begin. For an in-depth look at the issues behind the potential strike, click here.

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