Piccolo, Christopher House, LaSalle, K12.com

Lots of today's school news focuses on issues that will be debated or decided during the monthly Board meeting -- proposed closures (Piccolo, etc), proposed charter proposals (Christopher House, UNO), proposed changes to magnet programs (LaSalle), and a proposed expansion of virtual education that would award a contract to K12, Inc.

Protesters Stage Sit-In At CPS Ahead Of Meeting On School Closures CBS: More than 500 people jammed the sidewalk in front of the Chicago Public Schools' downtown headquarters for a 90-minute rally Tuesday night and a handful were determined to stay the night to be first in line for Wednesday's school board meeting.

Occupy Chicago, teachers protest school closings ABC7Chicago.com: Members of the Chicago Teachers Union and Occupy Chicago are spending the night atChicago Public Schools headquarters.

Parents, teachers and students protest at Piccolo AustinTalks: On December 13, 2011 Dozens of students, parents and teachers marched around Piccolo Elementary Specialty School after the dismissal bell rang last Friday, protesting the Chicago Public Schools' plans to re-staff the school and turn it .

Hundreds object to charter school plan at Northwest Middle School Sun Times: More than 1,000 parents and Belmont-Cragin residents have signed petitions objecting to an unusual plan that would allow a social-service group to tear down part of Northwest Middle School and erect a charter school on the public property.

Parent redouble efforts against charter school in Belmont Cragin Tribune:  Parents from Northwest Middle School, which successfully ended a bid by Christopher House last year for a charter school in the Belmont Cragin neighborhood, submitted 700 petitions Tuesday against the group's latest effort.

Charter school vote delayed; Sposato assailed Tribune: A rookie alderman got a taste Tuesday of what it's like to publicly challenge the City Hall power structure on a sensitive issue at the same time the political struggle of redrawing Chicago's ward boundaries plays out privately.

Vote on new UNO charter stalled after Ald. Sposato objects Sun Times: Zoning Committee Chairman Danny Solis (25th) denounced Sposato as an “embarrassment” and claimed the votes are there to approve the zoning change.

CPS mulls deal to expand virtual education Tribune: With an eye toward expanding Chicago Public Schools' online education offerings, the school board will consider awarding a share of a three-year, $1.9 million contract Wednesday to K-12 Virtual Schools LLC, a lucrative, publicly traded company.

Chicago wants to phase out coveted magnet school WBEZ: CPS wants to slowly convert the magnet [LaSalle] to a neighborhood school that draws from the immediate area, one of the ritziest in the city. The school would take no new magnet school kindergartners in the fall, unless they already had a sibling enrolled in the school.

Study: Dramatic Rise in Homeless Children CNC: The number of homeless children in Illinois increased by 88 percent between 2006 and 2010, according to a study released today

 

 

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  • Ditto, in Chicago: "Florida Charter Schools Failing Disabled Students" by John O'Connor and Sarah Gonzalez

    http://www.npr.org/2011/12/14/143659449/florida-charter-schools-failing-disabled-students

    A StateImpact Florida/Miami Herald investigation shows most charter schools in Florida are failing to serve students with severe disabilities.

  • Anyone out there been to the downtown protest?

  • In reply to Anonymous:

    here's a good tribune article on the downtown protest

    "Protesters send CPS board members scurrying"

    http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/chi-crowds-gather-to-protest-cps-school-closures-and-turnaround-projects-20111214,0,10496.story

  • Dear Parents,

    Yesterday we had a long LSC meeting regarding what was recommended to solve Lincoln's over-crowding problems.
    This plan was articulated at Lincoln where Mr. Cawley, CPS Chief Administrative Officer, answered Lincoln's parents questions. At LaSalle, Mr. Anderson, from the Office of Portfolio of Schools, explained the plan and answered our parents' questions.

    The plan recommends that:
    - Current LaSalle students stay at LaSalle
    - All 2012 Kindergarten siblings will be enrolled at LaSalle
    - For future years, the situation for Kindergarten siblings will be re-evaluated
    - LaSalle would have an attendance area within North, Armitage, Orchard, and Lake Michigan.

    Mr. Anderson said that he could not answer questions about LaSalle Magnet status.
    We committed to send him a list of siblings anticipated to apply to LaSalle in the next 5 years. We are going to create an electronic survey which will be sent this afternoon. We will need 100% responses in a very short time (by tomorrow) about potential siblings coming to LaSalle in the next 5 years. The LSC advocated that CPS considers committing to enroll all known siblings.

    The LSC also drafted a statement "Arguments against the CPS proposal to transform LLA into a neighborhood school". This statement was read to Mr. Anderson by Mr. Hicks and will be published with the minutes as soon as the minutes are approved.

    At this point, we have been told by Mr. Anderson that it was the intent of CPS to listen to both communities and gather ideas and options that would be looked at.

    Please make sure to answer the survey this evening.

    We will keep you informed as other developments occur. As a reminder, there is a PTA meeting today at 9 am and CPS representatives will answer questions you may have about this plan.

    Warmest regards,

    Elisabeth Heurtefeu Principal LaSalle Language Academy

  • In reply to Alexander Russo:

    the lasalle / lincoln discussion has its own post and new material here:

    De-Magnetizing LaSalle To Save Lincoln http://ow.ly/80oFL

    the board meeting protest and aftershocks are updated in a new post thursday morning:

    http://www.chicagonow.com/district-299-chicago-public-schools-blog/2011/12/board-meeting-protest-update/

  • Lasalle--you will get 40 acres and a mule. Do you even know what that means?

  • homeless deapartment--what are you called now?--they give schools no help no support--you are left all on your own-- always.
    hey, what do you do with parents who lie--over na dover--NOTHING!
    ignore it and still give the schools no help.

  • Solis has done NOTHING for neighborhood schools in his ward! He used our TIF dollars to give to cronies. The Juarez HS redo was initiated by his predecessor. Solis lost credibility a long time ago. His only concern is helping fellow crony Juan "I don't believe in transparency" Rangel, get more of our tax dollars to run his fourth rate charter school operation. He runs it like a Chinese sweat shop. If it was not for his machine friends in high places, UNO would not be in business. Solis, you are a disgrace to the latino community!

  • And the latino community re-elected him when they had a clear chance not too. I cannot feel sorry for them now.

  • Mike Klonsky's SmallTalk Blog: More video of today's battle in Chicago to save our schools http://ow.ly/8008Q

  • an email from a reader who says he's from northwest middle school's LSC and is opposed to the christopher house deal:

    "hello my name is julio cintron lsc member of northwest middle school cps has leased part of our property .to cristopher house even though our community dont want a charter . they forced it upon us telling us a little competition dont hurt .well you tell me they offer you a used car verses a new high tech car which one would you take? the charter is building anew high tech school. and cps tells us deal with it and dont complain about it (ps dont bring Emanuels name into bad publicity ! ) of course you cant tell my big mouth this so know i tell my story to who ever will listen ! and in doing so state rep Willy Delgado reached out to me and my school and in turn now we are reaching the state reps who put the money in their pockets and fund their dumb way of thinking, so know they want to help my school. mind you they to us to deal with it for the last three years this case is entirely different from other school"s. This is the worst case of back door closing. we may be poor latinos in a small section of the city but we love a good fight sincerly julio cintron"

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