Charters For Overcrowding?

Charters For Overcrowding?

Today's news includes a partial shutdown of the federal government (not sure it affects CPS at all immediately), coverage of the possible new charters that might come to overcrowded (as opposed to low-performing) parts of CPS, a bundle of CPS SNAFUs, and some talk about the importance of teaching math. Oh yes, and Texas got an NCLB waiver, leaving just Illinois and a couple of other states without one.  More to come via Twitter and in comments.  


CPS starts advisory councils to seek charters in overcrowded neighborhoods Tribune: Broy said that under former schools chief Arne Duncan, charter schools were largely built in African-American and Latino communities with underperforming schools. "Using charters as a pressure valve in overcrowded neighborhoods is a change in approach. We're not sure how successful it will be," Broy said.

Albany Park Community Mobilizes Against Charter Schools DNAI: Residents called on the aldermen to oppose a CPS request for new charter schools in Albany Park.
New McKinley Park Charter Siphoned My Students, Principal Says DNAI: The principal at Evergreen Academy Middle School blames an enrollment dip on a charter school's arrival.
Child-sex felon worked for City Hall, Chicago school system Sun Times: A Chicago man who was sentenced this week to 20 years in prison after pleading guilty to sexually assaulting a minor and videotaping the attacks had worked since 2008 as a City Hall aide and previously worked for former Chicago schools chief Arne Duncan, records show.
Safe Passage routes rife with sex offenders Sun Times: When children walk the stretch along Montrose Avenue through the heart of Uptown to Brennemann Elementary School, they already deal with violence and gang tensions. But like children at most of the other schools that received new Safe Passage routes, another potential danger lurks: registered sex offenders. A Sun-Times analysis found that 48 of 53 Safe Passage routes at schools that took in children from closed schools have sex offenders registered along them or within 1/8 mile — a full city block.
CPS makes changes after ABC7 investigation ABC: The I-Team follows up on a 2011 investigation that uncovered problems with the way CPS spent taxpayer money on furniture.

Is freshman algebra the answer to Chicago`s violence problem?
 Fox:  Could there be a link between 9th grade algebra and Chicago's murder rate? Researchers at the University of Chicago's Crime Lab believe so.
Teaching math WBEZ: A panel of local math educators discusses why math is taught the way it is and how that might be changing in schools across Chicagoland.
Rookie CPS teachers learn quickly in fast-moving district RedEye Chicago: The question of "why" weighs on many young Chicago Public Schoolsteachers beginning their careers now. A year after the dayslong Chicago Teacher's Union Strike and in the wake of the district closing 49 schools and laying off more than 1,000 teachers ...
Taming Chicago’s $1.7 billion TIF monster Sun Times: Many TIFs across town have achieved their goals. They have produced modernized factory districts, revitalized stores in neighborhoods that retailers had shunned and helped preserve historic buildings. But TIFs also have been used to subsidize private development or businesses that may or may not be credibly threatening to leave.

Senn, Chicago Math and Science Academy Among Best High Schools in City DNAI: Chicago Public Schools elevated both schools' performance ratings from "good" to "excellent" last week.

Healthy - and tasty - eating in Chicago Public Schools WBEZ: We talk about whether consumer boycotts yield any results in light of the Barilla controversy and recap the Bears game against the Lions. Later, we discuss what CPS is doing with its empty schools and ways chefs are helping CPS eat healthier.

Texas Wins NCLB Waiver After Making Big Changes to Plan Politics K12: The Education Department still lists as "pending" the waiver applications of Illinois, Iowa, and Wyoming -- except Illinois' application has essentially been rejected because of problems with its timeline and teacher evaluations. Iowa's has also been rejected because of teacher-evaluation problems, and Wyoming withdrew its request for now.

The Shutdown and Education: Your Cheat Sheet Politics K12: So it's happened: Congress was unable to reach agreement on temporary spending plan to keep the government open—and the U.S. Department of Education and other government agencies are on partial shutdown.

The inside story on LA schools’ iPad rollout: “a colossal disaster” Hechinger Report: On Friday I spoke to two LAUSD contractors who have first-hand knowledge of the rollout. They agreed to give an insiders’ view of the controversy on background. There’s an incredible litany of problems here that reads like a primer on what NOT to do with a major deployment of technology in a school district.


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  • wouldn't it be cheaper just to add on to overcrowded schools? WY is getting an addition and it isn't even over utilized? Maybe they should offer a charter prep for kids who just miss the WY cut.

  • Ashburn community is NOT overcrowded. There is room at Ashburn School for students and at Owens. Lets be honest here.
    Why be untruthful CPS? What are you up too in Ashburn?

  • I am sending this letter to all interested parties to report a social injustice at Aspira Inc. of Illinois. As an example of gross misappropriation of public funding, the Aspira Board of Directors led by the chairman, Fernando Grillo and the Chief Executive Officer, Jose Rodriguez, spent over $50,000.00 of public funds on a three day “retreat” in a Lake Geneva resort, over the summer. This mini-vacation, courtesy of the tax-payers of Illinois was put together by Grillo and Rodriguez to benefit the politically connected consulting firm of Charlie Serrano and Company who was awarded a lucrative no-bid contract to provide “board training” to the group. Serrano, who sources indicate is a close friend to Grillo was paid $25,000.00 to provide board development even though he has no experience in board development. They spent another $25,000 in other related expenses including hotel rooms, meals etc.
    This $50,000.00 should have been used to pay for resources to help the Aspira Charter High School where 85% of the students are not meeting academic standards. It should have been used to pay for a full time specialized teacher to help bring up the scores. It should have been used to pay for after-school tutoring benefitting the lowest performers at the schools. But apparently education is not the board’s or CEO’s priority. Instead they decided to use the $50,000 on themselves in one weekend.
    Fernando Grillo, is a partner in the investment firm of Samuel Ramirez & Company, and a close friend to disgraced former governor Rod Blagojevich, crooked Cook County Assessor Joseph Berrios, 31st Ward Alderman Ray Suarez, Congressman Luis Gutierrez and State Senator Iris Martinez among others. He and his investment firm have contributed thousands of dollars to their political campaigns (this can be confirmed through campaign disclosures in the State Board of Elections website). You may remember Grillo as the Director of the Illinois Department of Professional Regulations who was forced to resign under a cloud of suspicion just prior to Blagojevich’s indictment. Ironically this department regulates financial institutions. Fernando Grillo used his influence to hire Serrano and Company to do the board training. How many more contracts has he steered to his friends? This is a clear conflict of interest.

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