CHICAGO — Deandre Welch understands how a teachers strike might cause him to miss a few high school football practices and even a scheduled game. But the senior wide receiver certainly didn’t think the walkout would threaten his plans to pay for college.
“Football is basically my way to get into college,” Welch said. “I’m applying to schools, and some are asking for film of my senior games. If the strike continues, I won’t be able to send in that film.”
The strike in the nation’s third-largest school district could have unintended consequences for Chicago students whose college dreams are tied to their actions on the playing field.
As a captain of the team at Foreman High School on the city’s West Side, Johnny Daniels didn’t wait for a strike resolution to get back on the field. He knew his teammates needed to practice.
So he called them. Or he tweeted. He sent text messages and left Facebook posts. He did whatever he could to get athletes to come out for unofficial practices, which have been going on daily, without any coaches, since the strike began.