Archive for May 2015

How a Chicago Public Schools student dealt with grief

Lidia Lemus is a junior at Hancock College Prep High School on the city’s Southwest side.  Earlier this year, she faced the death of a loved one for the first time.  While everyone’s journey through the stages of grief is different, Lidia offers this reflection about her experience. On Wednesday February 11, 2015 I received... Read more »

Chicago Public Schools valedictorian victimized by Chicago police

A couple of weeks ago, I asked my mentee Jaime Bautista, the school’s valedictorian, to write a reflection about his new perspective of the world since he started working while in high school.  Unfortunately, Monday night after work, Jaime texted me that he had this ugly run in with two Chicago police officers.  While not... Read more »

What a Chicago Public Schools valedictorian learned from his first job

For many teens who work and go to high school, life becomes a balancing act of responsibilities.  This spring, the valedictorian at the Southwest side high school where I teach began to confront a new reality in “the real world.”  I proudly share this guest post by my student and mentee Jaime Bautista. I remember... Read more »
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Why my students' Advanced Placement scores matter. And why they don't.

I fight the obsession with testing and over-testing in our classrooms.  Yet, given the choice, I choose to teach AP English Language every chance I get.  After months of intense writing and thinking, over sixty of my students took their AP test this morning.  This is the sixth time I’ve taught this class.  And each... Read more »

Is Chicago Public Schools setting up the Chicago Teachers Union to strike?

Maybe I shouldn’t have obsessed over the Starz program Boss.  Maybe Sunday’s binge watching of Scandal raised my sensibilities.  Still, I’m trusting my gut, and my gut has never been wrong either.  Underhanded political games similar to those in my favorite television dramas may be gluing all of us to our TV sets and mobile phones... Read more »