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Independent reporting on urban education since 1990 2015-11-26T03:45:40Z
Updated: 2 hours 35 sec ago

Neighborhood high schools hit hard by more enrollment losses, funding cuts

September 26, 2015 - 3:06pm
The district lost more than than 5,000 students this year, which is more than twice the projected number. Twenty-seven schools with lower-than-expected enrollment will now lose more than a half-million dollars on top of earlier budget cuts.

Can Jenner’s “terrific facility” and strong arts programs overcome its history?

September 25, 2015 - 3:00pm
Jenner Elementary has a large, relatively new building, strong arts programs--and a tragic history. All three elements are in play as the community develops a proposal to merge Jenner, whose enrollment is overwhelmingly poor, with Ogden Elementary on the Gold Coast.

Proposal eliminates some test scores from high school rating policy

September 25, 2015 - 10:10am
CPS is in a dispute with the testing company, ACT, over what officials say were compromised EXPLORE and PLAN tests last year. As a result, the district wants to modify the school rating policy that takes into account those assessments -- and make a slight tweak to teacher evaluations.

Take 5: Ogden-Jenner merger, teacher disparity, possible mandate relief

September 24, 2015 - 1:41pm
If Ogden International and Jenner Academy merge, it would be an historic, parent-led effort to integrate two starkly different North Side schools: one enrolls among the most affluent student bodies in the city, the other has been all black and all poor for decades.

School leadership key in attracting and keeping good teachers

September 22, 2015 - 11:06am
Good teachers can be hard to find and harder to keep, but some high-poverty schools do it. At a Catalyst Chicago forum on September 15, Harvard University Prof. Susan Moore Johnson explained how. She was joined by Elaine Allensworth of the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research, Sarah Slavin of the Chicago New Teacher Center, and Donnell White, a Golden Apple Award winning math teacher. Here are some highlights from the event.

Most vulnerable students suspended most often

September 22, 2015 - 10:49am
A new report from the Consortium on Chicago Schools Research offers a sobering look at racial disparities in disciplinary actions at CPS high schools. Among the findings: 30 percent of high students with a documented history of being abused or neglected were suspended in the 2013-2014 school year.

Prominent arts and technology leaders to advise on reopening of Dyett High School

September 22, 2015 - 10:23am
Two expert committees focused on technology and the arts will advise on the reopening of Dyett High School — but the community activists who went on a hunger strike in support of the new school won't be among the advisors.

Chicago’s brand of teacher organizing goes viral

September 21, 2015 - 12:31pm
Seattle's recent teacher strike took pages from the Chicago playbook that spelled victory in 2012.

Take 5: PARCC scores, nurse issues, closer union ties

September 17, 2015 - 11:58am
Illinois released preliminary data for students who took a computer-based version of a new state standardized test. CPS revises its spending policy on food from outside vendors and some students go without nurses during their first week back at school.

Activists call for Noble to withdraw proposal

September 14, 2015 - 2:58pm
Community activists continued Monday to put pressure on Noble to withdraw a proposal to open a charter high school on the Southwest Side. At a meeting this weekend, the area's Neighborhood Advisory Council (NAC) voted against the proposal.

‘Opt-out’ advocates want new stance from state

September 14, 2015 - 9:00am
Parent activists want the state's education board to change its tone on the opt-out movement. While official data has not been released, self-reported data from CPS principals indicate that 9,600 students refused to take the PARCC this spring.

The changing face of CPS teachers

September 11, 2015 - 3:00pm
A diverse teaching force can help overcome the effects of unconscious biases on teacher expectations for students. But over the years, CPS has lost ground in this arena. While Latino teachers have slowly increased their numbers, African American teachers have been disappearing.

Take 5: Contract talks continue, school choice studies, parent involvement

September 10, 2015 - 11:29am
As school resumed this week and teachers returned to work without a contract, Chicago Teachers Union delegates are starting to gauge members’ feelings about the possibility of going on strike based on what’s currently being negotiated. “What will happen is a delegate will have a meeting at school and will ask questions, like how many […]

Summer counseling aimed at getting more high school grads in college

September 8, 2015 - 7:00am
Over the last two summers, CPS has invested in helping pay for summer transition counselors, who help recent graduates navigate the complex process that often precedes enrolling in college. For some veterans, it's a return to a strategy used in the early 2000s when resources for post-secondary work were plentiful.

CPS weighs an end to student retention

September 4, 2015 - 4:04pm
District officials have been meeting with community groups to discuss two proposals: One would completely eliminate retention, the second would severely limit its use. Either change would mean a complete overhaul of a CPS policy that gained national attention nearly two decades ago.

Discipline: From zero tolerance to restorative justice

September 4, 2015 - 3:00pm
Despite a new state law curbing the use suspensions, history suggests a shift to less punitive, more equitable disciplinary practices won't come easily in Chicago Public Schools.

Dyett to reopen as neighborhood arts school

September 3, 2015 - 7:11pm
District officials said they'd reopen Dyett High School as an arts-themed neighborhood high school. But activists on an 18-day hunger strike aren't ready to call it a victory.

Take 5: Dyett protests, child care help, Noble proposal

September 3, 2015 - 11:06am
The Dyett hunger strike takes center stage at two Chicago budget hearings while Mayor Rahm Emanuel offers to pay for part of the child care costs for families impacted by the state's budget impasse.

30 schools win back some special ed staff

August 30, 2015 - 9:57pm
CPS agreed to restore 60 special education positions — 10 teachers and 50 aides — across 30 schools after parents and principals expressed concerns about their proposed staffing levels. But 60 other district-run schools that contested their staffing levels received no adjustments.

Comings and Goings: Bebley, Dhupelia, Kucia, DeNard

August 28, 2015 - 3:43pm
James Bebley and Aarti Dhupelia are leaving CPS Central Office; several of new CEO Forrest Claypool's hires have been officially approved.


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