SUPES Suspended, Ruiz On The Hotseat

SUPES Suspended, Ruiz On The Hotseat

The Board suspended SUPES, no surprise, and Ruiz took a bunch of difficult questions from reporters in a video posted by WTTW afterwards.  Meanwhile, kids questioned Rahm at a student event, and Rauner threatened a veto against a testing relief bill in Springfield.  Nationally, testing opponents published pages from the New York State English test (a la George Schmidt?) and the judge in Atlanta is reconsidering the sentences for three of the educators who cheated to raise test scores.

New CPS boss suspends $20.5 million contract that is part of federal probe Tribune: Speaking at the first board meeting since news of the investigation broke last week, both Ruiz and board President David Vitale sought to calm concerns over their support of the controversial contract with an executive-training company tied to schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett. She took a leave of absence Monday amid the federal probe, and Ruiz was chosen to become acting CEO.

Board of Education Suspends Contract with SUPES Academy Chicago Tonight: Board Vice President Jesse Ruiz, who has been appointed as interim CEO of the district, explained that he’s taken several immediate steps to address the situation, the first of which is to suspend the district’s contract with SUPES Academy. Ruiz said he’s also asked CPS legal counsel to look into options to terminate the contract if any wrongdoing is found during the investigation.

Mayor Emanuel faces tough questions from teens at Ch. 11 forum Sun Times: From plans to transform no-bid contracts in light of the Chicago Public Schools scandal, to how he could make streets more friendly to students taking their bicycles or skateboards to school, Emanuel took on the questions on WTTW’s “Chicago Tonight” from Chicago Public School students involved in the Mikva Challenge, a youth leadership organization. Asked about unequal distribution of funds to the city’s schools and the city’s plan to fight for state funding, Emanuel vowed to be an advocate, despite Illinois’ dire financial predicament.

New state school chief says equity in education funding is top priority Sun-Times: Sitting in a room inside Salem Baptist Church, where Illinois State Board of Education Chairman James Meeks is pastor, Smith talked about his belief in equity for all students and a dedication to school quality. Smith recently worked at a private education fund in Oak Park, where he moved following a stint as superintendent of schools in Oakland, Calif.

Rauner threatens veto of school-testing bill Crain's: Administration sources confirm that the governor, a big school-reform advocate, is prepared to veto a bill awaiting a final House vote that effectively would let parents and school districts off the hook if kids fail to take state assessment tests—including the new Common Core exam required by federal law.

TESTING

Anti-‘Common Core’ activists leak state’s English exam online NY Post: More than three dozen photographs of the exam appeared Wednesday morning on the Facebook page “Education is a journey, not a race — USA,” which has posted screeds against Common Core-linked tests since March 2013.

Survey finds many parents know nothing about new Common Core tests KPCC: According to the nonpartisan research group Public Policy Institute of California, 55 percent of public school parents surveyed say they have not heard at all about the new tests that public schools are giving students grade 3 to 8 and grade 11 starting this spring. Another 36 percent say they have heard a little about the tests and only 8 percent say they have heard a lot about the exams.

Bills to Repeal Common Core Hit Roadblocks; Will Reviews Satisfy Foes? State EdWatch: Common-core-repeal bills are failing widely in state legislatures this year, but will bills to review the standards fare any better?

OTHER CITIES

3 Ex-Educators in Atlanta Cheating Case to Be Resentenced AP: Judge in Atlanta test cheating case to resentence 3 former educators who got stiffest sentence.

What happens when a school is forced to move, and then move again Hechinger: Next year, three relatively young charter schools will find themselves in new facilities, and another school that’s been closed by the state is facing financial problems if it can’t unload the portable buildings it bought. And that doesn’t take into account the temporary quarters other charters occupy while their primary campus is being renovated under a $1.8 billion post-Katrina rebuilding program.

Report: Latino Kids in New York City Have it the Hardest WNYC: Latino families have the lowest annual median income, close to $36,000 which is about half the median income for white families. And while Latino children comprise just over a third of the kids in the city, they account for 48 percent of kids receiving mental health services. In comparison, African-American children account for 30 percent of kids in the mental health system.

'Lunch lady' lobby joins GOP to fight Obama's school lunch rules LA Times: The locally sourced macaroni and cheese the schools had been serving turned to mush when it was made with whole-grain macaroni to meet the new rules, Grether-Sweeney said. That once-popular meal is now off the menu. So too are wraps, which she says won't hold together with the brittle wheat tortillas she now must use. Many fewer meals are getting sold at school, she said.

These student whistleblowers spoke up to prevent a shooting PBS NewsHour: Tonight, we travel to the town of Lebanon, Pennsylvania, where a potential attack by students was foiled one year ago.As part of our ongoing Student Reporting Labs series called The New Safe, student television network correspondent Nick Weiss investigates what inspired a handful of brave students to take action.

Pa. schools are the nation’s most inequitable. The new governor wants to fix that. Washington Post: At Martin Luther King High, a hulking half-full school here, there aren’t enough textbooks to go around. If teachers want to make a photocopy, they have to buy paper themselves. Though an overwhelming majority of students are living in poverty, no social worker is available to help. Private donations allow for some dance and music classes, but they serve just 60 of the school’s 1,200 students.

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