Today's news includes updates on the spring testing changes for CPS and the nation, lots of coverage of the mayoral and aldermanic campaigns and the elected school board resolutions, and a few tidbits about schools and classrooms and, you know, that stuff that goes on in them. On the testing issue, 30 states are scheduled to use one of the two new Common Core assessments this spring, including Illinois, but Chicago schools will only administer the new test to 10 percent of its kids. Over the weekend on Facebook, some folks expressed strong opinions about whether new classroom management and discipline techniques are putting too much burden on teachers for kids' behavior and larger social problems.
SITTING OUT PARCC TEST
CPS surrenders in standardized test battle Chicago Tribune: Barbara Byrd-Bennett says Chicago will be ready to give it to all students next year. But given the abdication of responsibility this year, why should anyone believe that?
What happens when the Common Core becomes less ... common? Washington Post: Eu Hyun Choi, a seventh-grade math teacher in Chicago, said on a trip to New York for literacy training she realized that, because the two states gave different tests, it wasn’t possible to gauge how her students measured up against those in New York. Choi said she hopes her students are among those who will take the PARCC exam this year, but she was dismayed to find out that she’ll only be able to compare her students’ performance with 11 other states. “That’s pretty shocking,” she said.
Students Caught in Middle of PARCC Debate Chicago Tonight | WTTW: This past weekend, Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett announced that only about 10 percent of schools will take the PARCC test this spring.
Drawn out of his ward, Fioretti 'ready to step out there and take the lead ... Chicago Sun-Times: Instead, the Chicago Teachers Union and other labor groups have backed Cook County Commissioner Jesus “Chuy” Garcia while still others have backed Emanuel. Fioretti lags both of them as well as businessman Willie Wilson, who has donated more than...
Emanuel, challengers face off over elected school boards Chicago Tribune: The issue of an elected school board has been driven by Emanuel's chief political nemesis, theChicago Teachers Union, as an outgrowth of the first-term mayor's 2013 decision to have his school board close 49 elementary schools and a high school.
Poll: Emanuel Likely Headed Into Runoff Against Garcia Progress IL: The telephone survey of 600 registered and likely Chicago voters shows Emanuel with 38 percent of the vote, followed by Cook County Commissioner Jesus "Chuy" Garcia at 16 percent and Ald. Bob Fioretti (2nd) at 8 percent. Mayoral candidates Willie Wilson and William "Dock" Walls earned 5 percent and 1 percent of the vote, respectively. Thirty percent of survey respondents were undecided.
Watchdogs: Rahm Emanuel's fundraising nears $30 million Chicago Sun-Times: $262,500 and $35,000, respectively, from the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and the Chicago Board Options Exchange, the trading hubs that Chicago Teachers Union president Karen Lewis and others have said should be subject to taxes on stock, futures
Chicago Teachers Union makes endorsement in 5th Ward, passes on 4th Hyde Park Herald:The Chicago Teachers Union is endorsing 24 candidates in this year's municipal election — including a local alderman. The union on Tuesday endorsed mayoral candidate Jesus “Chuy” Garcia and aldermanic candidates in 23 wards, including Ald. Leslie ...
Obama 2.0 moving up in Chicago Chicago Sun-Times: Frank Bass is a consultant who has worked in county government, has won endorsements from theChicago Teachers Union and IVI/IPO. This crowded field is headed for a runoff.
TEACHING / DISCIPLINE
To Improve School Discipline, Change Teacher Behavior Slate: Various programs have cropped up to support the effort. A local partnership called All-In! places therapists and special-education specialists in elementary classrooms, helping teachers identify and address trauma-induced behavior and emotional problems that they might otherwise dismiss as mere misbehavior. Seneca Family of Agencies, a California child welfare organization, is expanding the approach to five Oakland and two San Francisco schools using a $3 million grant from a U.S. Department of Education innovation fund.
Mother, daughter charged with attacking CPS employees, teen boy Chicago Sun-Times: A mother and daughter upset that their teenage relative was disciplined at a South Side elementaryschool are charged with allegedly beating and stabbing two Chicago Public Schools employees and a teen boy at the school. See also Tribune.
Despite Financial Woes, Philadelphia Can't Overrule Teachers' Contract, Judge Rules TeacherBeat: A Pennsylvania judge ruled on Thursday that the Philadelphia School Reform Commission does not have authority to unilaterally change the teacher contract and impose new terms.
Farina Consolidates Power in School Superintendents WNYC: Principals were treated as C.E.O.'s of their schools by the previous administration but Chancellor Carmen Fariña wants their bosses, school superintendents, to have more of a say.
Museum Opens Doors, Turns Down Lights For Autistic Kids NPR: Loud noises, bright lights and crowded spaces can be painful for children with autism. That often means missing out on museums. Some, like Seattle's Pacific Science Center, are addressing the problem.
5th-Grader Strip-Searched at School MSNBC: A California mother says her 5th grade son was forced to disrobe in front of his class, after his teacher accused him of stealing homework passes. KCRA's Claire Doan reports that the boy's mom has now pulled him from the school after repeated harassment.
Boy, 13, arrested in fatal stabbing near Los Angeles school AP: A 13-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of murder in the fatal stabbing of a 14-year-old high school student outside an East Los Angeles middle school....
COMMON CORE (NATIONAL)
What happens when the Common Core becomes less ... common? Washington Post: Now only 12 states plus the District plan to give the PARCC exam to students, according to the Council of State School Officers, an organization of state education chiefs. Smarter Balanced has seen less attrition, but just 18 states plan to give that test this spring.
Kasich Calls Out Conservatives Who Oppose Common Core HuffPost: Kasich dismissed criticisms of the standards from those like Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R), who argue that the guidelines will lead the federal government to have more control of the education system in the United States.
Mississippi House passes bill that keeps Common Core but changes name Hechinger Report: Mississippi legislators passed with wide support a bill Thursday that proponents say will give the state more control over public education standards but even they admit it would have no effect on what schools currently teach.