Catalyst Chicago

Each fall, guidance counselor Joyce Caito becomes a bit of a salesman, trying to convince 8th-graders of the merits of their neighborhood high school. And each fall, she becomes frustrated when so many students put the neighborhood school, Roosevelt High, at the bottom of their wish lists.

Caito, a counselor at Bateman Elementary in Irving Park, says it was the same story at two other CPS elementary schools where she previously worked. “It’s almost frowned upon if you want to go to your neighborhood [high] school.”