By Ali Heinen, Case Intake Coordinator
Twenty students from Prosser Career Academy and seven members of the CCH Education Committee arrived on the 57th floor of the Chase Tower and were surrounded by mesmerizing views of the city skyline. They were greeted by 18 JP Morgan Chase employees and eight CCH staffers, who joined them for a pizza lunch.
Students were selected by Patricia Scott, the registrar and Prosser’s liaison for Students in Temporary Living Situations (STLS). The STLS program serves students in the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) who live in homeless situations – 20,205 students were identified by the end of the 2014-15 school year.
Education Committee members and their children arrived at the party immediately after testifying to the Chicago Board of Education. They asked the Board to adopt a comprehensive, up-to-date CPS policy on the educational rights of homeless students. Parents and youth from our committee have testified five times in the past year about this issue, including the need to continue transportation services.
The students and Chase employees enjoyed conversation on everything from extracurricular activities to the teens’ career plans.
“Their aspirations are exceptional for the situations they are in. It is amazing how much they are doing to reach their goals,” said volunteer Lashonda Hayword, an administrative assistant at Chase.
This is the third year that CCH’s Law Project and Chase have partnered to host a holiday party for high school students, followed by attending a Broadway in Chicago musical. It is part of a Law Project initiative, Every Child in School, Every Day, generously supported for six years by grants from the JPMorgan Chase Foundation.
After lunch, the students and Education Committee members headed to the Cadillac Palace Theater for a matinee of The Lion King.
Aalyah Nelson, a junior at Prosser, reflected on the experience: “Everything about today was so nice. Everyone at Chase had a lot of wisdom to give us and the show was great!”