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Teachers need COVID-19 vaccines NOW!

I’m over 65 and work in a grocery store. I spent hours this week trying to get a vaccine appointment. But I would let a teacher cut in line.

A teacher teaches outside DeWitt Clinton Elementary School in West Rogers Park last Thursday to protest Chicago Public Schools’ reopening plan.
Pat Nabong/Sun-Times

Remember back at the start of the pandemic when parents were posting videos about how batty they were from spending 24/7 with their school-age children, now homebound?

“Teachers should earn a million dollars!” folks declared.

“We need to get these kids back to school! This (child) isn’t learning. He’s going to be the stupidest person on the planet.”

“I can’t help my own child with her schoolwork. Teaching is rocket science!”

SEND LETTERS TO: letters@suntimes.com. Please include your neighborhood or hometown and a phone number for verification purposes. Letters should be 350 words or less.

If teachers and children are at school, parents can work. If parents are able to work, the economy will be able to right itself. Parents can work better without children running around the house and work longer if they aren’t doing a second shift as parent-teacher. Teachers are the lynchpin. They deserve to go to the head of the line in Phase 1B. Haggling about it is political, not sensical.

I’m over 65 and work in a grocery store. I spent hours this week trying to get a vaccine appointment. I’m still trying. But I would let a teacher cut in line. Getting teachers protected and back into classrooms will be a giant step toward normalcy, and heaven knows, we need that.

Leslie Baldacci, Morgan Park

Teachers should be at front of line

It broke my heart to see Chicago Public Schools teachers sitting outside at my former grade school (DeWitt Clinton) wrapped in winter clothing, shivering in the freezing cold, trying to type on their computers with gloves on. Is that even possible?

They did this in order to be paid. They “reported” to school, but they wanted to remain safe from COVID-19.

I cannot understand. After resorting to remote instruction for more than 10 months, why can’t the school district’s administration wait two more weeks to make sure that all staff have at least one dose of the vaccine? Why is the Feb. 1 start date so important when the vaccine date is so close? While it is true that many suburban districts, including the one in which I live, have offered hybrid classes for months, most of these areas do not have the same high infection rates as many Chicago zip codes are experiencing.

I am in the same 1B group as the teachers, being over the age of 65. As a former teacher, I know that in-person instruction is the only way to reach kids who would rather not pay attention to anything a teacher has to say.

Many people in my age group are retired and would gladly step aside in order to get all teachers vaccinated first. We may get sicker than teachers who are younger than we are, but teachers should not have to choose between their health and their job.

Jan Goldberg, Riverside

Those who have, get

Did you hear the one about how James and Paula Crown, heirs to Chicago industrialist Henry Crown’s massive family fortune, just gave a gift of $75 million to the University of Chicago, an elite institution with an endowment of $8.6 billion? Wait for the punchline… The money goes to the university’s School of Social Service Administration.

As they say, charity begins at home.

Tom Golz, Avondale

The stupidity of calling “dibs”

Your editorial on Wednesday regarding dibs-calling in the wintry streets of Chicago was well thought out and fair, and yet...stupid.

Forgive me and my long memory, but growing up on the northern boundary of Englewood in the 1950’s, I simply have no memory of anyone doing something as selfish and low-class as calling dibs on a shoveled-out parking spot. Granted, there probably were a lot fewer cars in the streets then. My Irish immigrant parents possessed neither an automobile nor driver’s licenses. The landlord of our two-flat didn’t learn to drive and subsequently buy a car until she was in her 40’s!

Nonetheless, there were cars, and back then people just seemed to roll on with much less pettiness over parking in our block of South Lowe Avenue.

This puts me in mind of this relatively new phenomenon of Cubs Suck/Sox Suck. Again, growing up on the South Side in the ‘50’s, we liked our Chicago teams. Sherm Lollar, Ernie Banks — it didn’t matter to us. This odd thing about “hating’”the other side’s team simply didn’t exist then and there. Ask someone over the age of 60 and I think this will bear out to be true. In the meantime, Go Bears!

Dennis Allen, Wilmette