Kinder, Gentler Closings?

Today's other news besides the new report cards includes a story from Catalyst about the latest school closing criteria, an update from a recent report about merging teacher observations and teacher value-added scores (also from Catalyst), and of course the Lewis apology (which has gone national, BTW).

Teacher evaluation pilot shows promise Catalyst:  The researchers found that the conversations that principals and teachers had with the new framework were more reflective and based on concrete evidence. However, they note that the principals did most of the talking and that, for the most part, they didn’t ask teachers hard questions.

School-closing opponents turn out to meeting Catalyst:  Not only were many audience members opposed to school closings, they were also skeptical that Oliver Sicat, the Chief Portfolio Officer, would have the power to make changes based on their feedback. Angela Surney, whose children attend Marconi, which was on the school closings list last year, but was spared, compared Sicat to a “puppet” and a “sheep led to slaughter.”

Teachers union president apologizes after 'ugly' remarks caught on videeo Tribune: Lewis said Monday she was wrong to make the joke and called Duncan to explain. Education department spokesman Justin Hamilton said today that Duncan accepted her apology.


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  • A closings is a closing, is a closings! Put your boots on, it's about to get deep!

  • now lewis says she's going to have a press conference tomorrow AM to talk about the video - again. not sure why.

  • Catalyst got it wrong - the only promise that the new evaluation system holds is it's ability to justify a reduction in instructional expenditures. Value-Added metrics have proven to be deeply flawed and easily, very easily subject to abuse….and by the way, dear Catalyst, it's not just the Carol Caref, who suggests that Value-Added Metrics should never, ever be used in teacher-evaluations - it's what every single statistician who has ever studied the stupid thing says,,,sans sell-out, ethicless Eric Hanushek

    And as far as Danielson's framework goes, I agree that it's a good framework, but be prepared to pay teachers the $250,000 per year, because you have to be PHD in Education to pull it off consistently, especially in a district that is about 70% low income… speaking of that statistic, why not a value-added measure on the Mayor's effectiveness at reducing poverty?….or reducing the number of homeless children in chicago…last I checked, child homelessness was reported to be increasing under our new Mayoral leadership...

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