Reactions Roundup

Reactions Roundup

Today's education news includes Emanuel's response to the school closing announcement -- as well as Arne Duncan's, Stand for Children's, and the Trib and Sun Times editorial pages' -- plus a return to the debate over what should happen to the buildings that are going to be emptied, and an update on the coalition that's running to unseat current CTU president Karen Lewis et al.  


Emanuel: CPS school closures 'not taken lightly,' but must be done WBEZ: “This is very difficult, a lot of anguish, and I understand that and I appreciate it,” Emanuel said. “But the anguish and the pain that comes … from making the change is less, or minimal, in my view, or pales compared to the anguish that comes by trapping children in schools that are not succeeding.”

Emanuel on school closures: 'Investing in quality education' Chicago Tribune:Speaking publicly for the first time since Chicago Public Schools announced that more than 50 schools are to close, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said the motive behind the plan is to ensure that all children in Chicago receive a quality education.


 A "B-" on School Actions Plan Stand for Children: While many of the proposed actions offer students significantly better access, many will only provide moderate or no improvement.

Chicago School Closings Huffington Post: “When, where, why and how to close schools are local questions that are never easy. No educator ever wakes up in the morning wanting to close a school," Duncan said in a Thursday statement provided to HuffPost. "Closing a school is a difficult but sometimes necessary decision, and districts and local leaders should strive for a transparent process that listens to community input and offers better educational options for affected families."

Editorial: Closing 54 schools so soon means pain Sun Times: CPS will need all the help it can get. Whether you approve or not, schools will be closed and kids will be moved.

Chicago Public Schools closings Tribune (editorial): The adults have been heard. Now is the time to focus on the kids.

'We Are Closing Too Many Schools' Alderman Says Patch: Elementary schools in Ravenswood will take in students from Chicago Public Schools buildings on a list for closure. District officials announced the plan to close 54 schools ...

Controversial Chicago School Closings Outrage Parents, Teachers NPR: Students, parents and teachers at close to fifty Chicago public schools find out today that their schools will likely be closed this summer. Leaders in the nation's third largest school system say they need to close and consolidate underutilized schools to save money.

Ready for reform Tribune (editorial): Last year, 8,781 students dropped out of Chicago public high schools. In our elementary schools, 51,106 children couldn't meet state reading standards. And as you absorb this editorial, 19,000 young people yearn to leave their current public schools for seats in charter schools. Why? Because those kids — and their often desperate parents — know that as their childhoods quickly slip away, they're ... falling ... further ... behind.

Was There Ever a Golden Age of Chicago Public Schools? ChicagoMag: A look back at 50 years of CPS reform finds all the same problems, statistics, and nostalgia for a better time.


Despite promise, not all schools on CPS closing list are sending kids to schools with better scores Sun Times:  Chicago school officials say when they close 54 schools, students will be moved to better-performing schools. But a Chicago Sun-Times analysis that finds that students from one-third of schools being closed will move to schools with academic rankings similar to those they are leaving, and kids from eight schools will land at schools with lower state standardized test scores. School officials say overall the schools where kids will go are indeed better, and they say they define school performance as state law says they must.
School closings? Beavers conviction? The results of our corrupt system WBEZ:  Unless this very corrupt and insular system itself changes -- and that starts with whom we, as citizens, elect to lower offices such as the City Council -- nothing else will change. Emanuel and Daley are of the same royally-entitled bloodline.

Maps of Note: CPS’ School Closures on Chicago’s Homicide Heat Map Chicagoist: Opponents to CPS’ school closure plan have framed their argument as a public safety issue as much as one of quality education. The group Radicals Against Discrimination took the list of closures and overlaid their locations on Chicago’s Homicide Heat Map. The result is shocking, yet unsurprising. (Click the image to enlarge.)

PBS NewsHour: Interviews with CPS, CTU WTTW: The Chicago Board of Education plans to close 54 schools, citing a $1 billion deficit and under-enrollment. Critics say this move will disrupt communities and put kids in danger. For both sides of the debate, PBS NewsHour's Jeffrey Brown talks with School Board vice president Jesse Ruiz and Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union.


CPS School Closings Will Leave 61 Vacant Buildings: What Happens to Them? DNAI: The closure of 54 public schools and merging of 11 more will leave CPS with 61 vacant buildings.

Unchain the charters Tribune (editorial): Here's a haunting statistic that we cannot repeat too often: Of all the school districts in the U.S., Chicago Public Schools has one of the longest waiting lists for admission to a charter school. Right now, CPS is blowing a perfect opportunity to lure more top-flight charters here: CPS CEOBarbara Byrd-Bennett vows that all the schools slated last week for closing will not house charters. What a waste of physical resources — schools built with ...

What’s the plan for Chicago schools? CMW: The purpose of the school facilities law was to bring transparency to CPS’s planning. Instead, according to advocates for neighborhood schools, the district is carrying out Mayor Emanuel’s long-term plan to close neighborhood schools and open charters.


Science revolution heading to Illinois schools Tribune: As early as kindergarten, all students in Illinois could be engaged in science and engineering practices, from analyzing data to defining problems and designing solutions.

Challengers emerge for union election Catalyst: Members of the coalition charge that current CTU President Karen Lewis has failed to prevent school closings and damaged relationships with CPS by relying too much on protests.

Filed under: Daily News Roundup


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  • The only thing I can figure out from this is if the rationale for the protests (at least according to TV) is that two schools 3 blocks apart are separated only by a clear cut free fire zone, Chicago has completely surrendered to the gangs, and should declare itself Detroit West.

    Otherwise, there isn't going to be any solution as the population flees, as it is now doing.

  • In reply to jack:

    jagk- Strike 5. Sociology lesson time. Comparing Chicago to Detroit is extremely ignorant and unnecessarily provocative. The homicide rate in Detroit is well over double that of Chicago. Murder in Chicago is largely driven by gang conflict. This isn't the case in Detroit. Detroit has lost well over half of it's population while Chicago has shrunk by 10%. Chicago has many neighborhoods, especially in the Southwest side that are bursting at the seams. Detroit doesn't have this issue.

    I could go on and on as to why your comparison is wildly off the mark, but why bother? You will reject my attempts to educate you and continue to spout truthyness. Once again you are wrong. I wish you could admit that and begin to listen.

  • In reply to district299reader:

    Pedantic garbage on your part #37,913.

    Unless some way is found to turn around the population losses, caused in part by GANG PROBLEMS on the south and west sides, that sort of end is inevitable.

    What do you teach your students? That marching for a closing moratorium is going to cure a $1 billion deficit? And stop the migration out of the south and west side? Apparently you can't see or teach the big picture,and try to dissect it to where you are comfortable.

    And, as I pointed out earlier, I don't trust instruction from a teacher who has only the guts to be district299reader#37,516. Maybe the parents in Chicago shouldn't, either.

  • In reply to jack:

    So you are admitting that your comparison to Detroit is invalid. Good, I just wish you would clearly state it instead of beating around the bush.

    As far as being anonymous, there are real repercussions for educators like myself. Remember, you too are anonymous. The repercussions for a retiree like yourself are minimal.

    Buddy, there is little difference between logging in as "jagk" or "Donn" or as "district299reader"

  • In reply to district299reader:

    1 I am not admitting any such thing, especially with regard to the south and southwest sides.

    2. I have explained before that there is a difference between me signing in as jack and hundreds of you signing in as "district299 reader." To state it again, if you can't comprehend that, is that if the software is working properly, I am the only one signing in as jack, and the moderator has access to my e-mail address. That isn't the case with respect to you, nor with respect to some other poster who made personal threats against me elsewhere on Chicago Now.

    So, try to parse your way out of that one, district299reader.

    And if you fear repercussions for what you post, than don't try to influence others, as you do not have the courage of your convictions.

  • In reply to jack:

    jagk- Strike 6. The SW Side is overflowing. Once again you demonstrate a lack of knowledge of the situation at hand.

    I'd buy you a shovel, but you are quite adept at digging yourself your own holes.

  • In reply to district299reader:

    Since you are so particular about East Englewood vs. West Englewood, I didn't say anything about the sw side, just the s and w sides. I guess you are a teacher who can't read.

    In fact, you can't dig yourself out of your own hole that you can't confront the big picture,but merely parse.

    And unlike the other district299reader thug, you don't know that I am not retired, Mr. or Ms. Perfect.

    The difference is that, since I am not retired, I am supporting nonthinking teachers like you.

    Don't bother replying; I know you have nothing to add, and I am not going to look.

  • In reply to jack:

    jagk- Strike 7 and 8. Man, I'm gonna have a perfect game with you.

    You didn't say anything about the SW side?!?! Look at the following quote that you posted about an hour and 1/2 ago- "I am not admitting any such thing, especially with regard to the south and southwest sides."

    There is no such neighborhood as "East Englewood." West Englewood and Englewood are recognized community areas- "East Englewood" is the umpteenth demonstration of your serious lack of knowledge of the City of Chicago.

    jagk- your arguments are based on false premises. You are unable to admit that the schema you have built inside your brain are wrong. Like Rush Limbaugh you fold in the face of debate and competition.

    I could call your portrayal of me as a "thug" yet another strike but that would be charitable. You have a penchant for exaggeration. Get right and listen to your teacher.

  • In reply to jack:

    poor jack should have given up while he was still ahead

  • fb_avatar

    According to Stand on Children "The analysis looked solely at the academic opportunities available to affected children. It did not evaluate plan implementation, safe passage to new school or safety conditions, facilities, co-locations, or individual student transition plans."

    So let's ignore the train wreck about to occur and focus on one easily measured element.

  • jagk- Are you claiming to be courageous? The fact that the moderator has your email address is meaningless. Would you be satisfied if I posted as "jill." Sir, you are no Rod Estvan or Xian Barrett.

    Time and time again I have laid waste to your "opinions" which are usually based on inaccurate assumptions and personal feelings of the way things should be. I have provided you with facts that are ignored. Your posts are based on false premises which you refuse to acknowledge. You suffer from the same affliction as your boy Emanuel. You are both often wrong, but you cannot admit it.

    Chicago bears little resemblance to Detroit. Your knowledge of neighborhoods affected by school closings on the south side is poor. You are relentless in your pursuit of truthyness.

    Why do you wallow in such a lack of knowledge and disregard for facts?

  • Students stepping up - no to all this testing:

  • Retired principal--you are quiet of late. Have you been hired to help close down these schools this June?

  • In reply to district299reader:

    No, I have been out of town!

  • welcome back--you were missed--much happened. whats the word?

  • In reply to district299reader:

    I will be at the CTU rally today and will talk to people to see what the latest is. Thanking you in advance.

  • The system has sold the thinkng that this action is the right thing to do for kids and families. The outcry has lessened since the announcement. Minorities in Chicago (especially blacks) have no community power. What people don't realize is community pressure and voting power is the only thing that trumps politics, but you have to use it. Some aldermen made statements to cover their A, but they have all fallen in line now. I was surprised to see the normally outspoken Beale smiling and yessir - bossin with the mayor the other day. the seed has been planted that this massive closing is the right thing to do.

  • Chicago's African Americans will have much less voting power next mayoral election then they did when they elected Rahm mayor--many will be splintered and chased from the city (and even killed) by the time of the next mayoral election, because of these school closings.
    UNO will deliver the Hispanic vote for second term mayor Rahm. (and for the governor, Madigan and some white aldermen too.)
    A few pieces of silver buys alot of votes.
    Currently in CPS = majority teachers white, majority students Hispanic, majority losing their jobs-African Americans, middle class teaching jobs and the low paying jobs of custodians and lunchroom services, which in turn will lesson their Chicago neighborhoods as they lose their homes and have no choice but to leave Chicago.
    Rahm is doing to the Black middle and working class the same Daley did to the Blacks in the Robert Taylor homes-eliminating them

  • D299reader your assessment is painful but true. Without a relentless community, or civil rights leader like an MLK to create an intense change-movement of community activism, your predictions will come to fruition.

  • The interview tonight with the AUSL gal was telling-(Ch.11). First, she stated that she just found out that AUSL was getting certain CPS schools like Barton and a few others for turnaround. She needs to realize that this decision was likely made by the white guys that oversee her and AUSL—she was purposely kept out of the loop. As for AUSL scores, she forgot to add that some AUSL schools are below the CPS average and that one will be closed. Not all AUSL schools are as great as she fictionlized them to be. She also stated that AUSL would be ready to take-over these schools since they had 150 teachers who have gone through their program. This is evidence that tenured teachers do not have a chance to stay at any of the turnaround AUSL schools. I went to one of their borg meetings--the required plant, couch in the classroom and quote: you don't use a pencil unless you do it the AUSL way.

  • Latino Policy Forum expresses concerns about receiving schools, preschool slots #cpsclosings @latinopolicy

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