I'm working on a story about how different districts close and open schools -- Chicago's not the only one -- and finding some interesting differences between how CPS does it and how others have figured it out. In LA, for example, a turnaround effort requires a majority vote of both the teachers and the parents before it's implemented. And in New York City, kids aren't forced to change schools and the school being phased out is given special support to make sure that it's programs don't dwindle before the kids all graduate out. Of course, some folks will say that schools should never be closed, and new schools are almost by definition suspect. That's not my view, but I think that the closing process in Chicago still needs to get better. The TAC closing and opening advisory process seems especially weak.
Speaking of new schools, the Renaissance Schools Fund is holding a Symposium on Tuesday May 6th at the Mid-America Club in Chicago. It will involve education leaders from the Chicago Public Schools, Green Dot Public Schools, NewSchools Venture Fund, KIPP, Chicago civic and business leaders, and many more in "a discussion of the early successes and challenges of the new schools movement (www.rsfsymposium.org)."
Filed under: The World Outside CPS