I'm not against new schools. I'm not even against closing and reopening existing schools if it's done without displacing kids (as it has been in recent years). But as I said from the start, new schools themselves are just a drop in the bucket given the size of CPS. Does anyone really care about new schools anymore or are we all pretty much against them because they're (a) all of them that are getting approved are replications from existing organizations or (b) part of the evil Renaissance 2010 shadow government? Or, is the new schools process important?
I'm not against new schools. I'm not even against closing and reopening existing schools if it's done without displacing kids (as it has been in recent years). But as I said from the start, new schools themselves are just a drop in the bucket given the size of CPS.
The new schools part of Ren10 was too small, not too big. It was a sideshow, a shiny new idea spun into seeming like it was much bigger than it really was. Sort of like "Race To The Top," Duncan's current federal initiative, which is also much smaller than we're being led to believe. Even the Civic Committee has moved on.
Regardless of what I think, I get the distinct sense that new schools aren't such a big deal for Huberman as they were for Duncan. Why not? There's no problem getting to 100 new schools by 2010, so they can declare victory and move on. The school closings part of Ren10 - never officially part of the effort but obviously connected -- is under a cloud from Fenger and Wells and other examples. Revamping existing, full-sized schools is where the action's at, where New York City's much-admired (-loathed) school system has focused its attention.
Meanwhile, today's the day for school design teams that went through the Ren10 new
schools process to have their say in front of CPS -- the last step (I
think) before the official vote of the Board on the Huberman
recommendations. I'm assuming that the speaking list will be packed
with supporters who are happy they got a recommendation for a new
school or a charter conversion. Folks from Avondale will be there.
Not sure about other design teams that didn't get through. To see the
list of schools that are being recommended and details about the
hearing (which is tonight at the Board) click here and scroll to the bottom.