Archive for June 2011

ISATS: Why CPS Downplayed Higher Scores

Believing that too much focus on test score increases might undercut claims for further changes (and wouldn’t be credited to them, anyway), CPS and City Hall downplayed increases that in any other year would have been used as a moment for celebration: Chicago test scores up, but officials not satisfied WBEZ:  Trouble between the lines Sun Times... Read more »

AM News: You're Fired.

1,000 Chicago teachers to be let go in annual layoff:  The layoffs include the annual reduction in teaching staff because of school closings and enrollment declines, but they also include school-based… Emanuel announces expansion of CPS ‘teaching academies’ Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced plans today to expand a Chicago Public Schools teacher training program that would double the... Read more »

Video: "Bridesmaids" Remade In Middle School

  There’s more than enough to amuse or offend everyone in the latest Cameron Diaz / Justin Timberlake vehicle (which from the trailer looks like Bridesmaids remade in a middle school setting): Uncaring teachers, ridiculous test score bonuses, and a lot of swear words and dirty jokes.  But it’s set here, so at least watch... Read more »
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Emanuel & Duncan Push DREAM Act Next Week

On Monday, Duncan, Chicago Mayoral Rahm Emanuel and others will appear at West Point to talk about the DREAM Act.  One of the two will reveal that he is actually an undocumented alien (no, not really).   More DREAM on Tuesday, then appearances Thursday and Friday at the Aspen Ideas Festival related to every reformers’... Read more »

AM News: Test Scores Somehow On The Rise

*See previous post for news and commentary on home visits* Improved test scores announced; and layoff procedures spelled out Catalyst: It’s not clear what caused the increase of nearly 4 percentage points in the proportion of students meeting or exceeding state standards. Details on preliminary test score results released Friday Tribune:  While the district’s students... Read more »

Teachers: Is The Home Visit Proposal For Real?

Everyone’s been talking about Brizard’s notion of sending CPS teachers out on home visits since yesterday:  CPS teachers making home visits Sun Times:  CPS Head Wants Teachers to Visit Homes  Fox: Teachers who visit homes well-received by parents Sun Times:  Schools CEO: More days in class, home visits but fewer teacher raises Sun Times I... Read more »
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AM News: Board Approves Brizard Salary Despite Protest

CPS chief Brizard gets a contract — unlike predecessors — and a raise Tribune:  The Chicago Public Schools board on Wednesday gave the district’s newest steward, Jean-Claude Brizard, what none of his recent predecessors had: a contract…  1000 CPS teachers protest canceled raises while execs get higher salaries Sun TImes:  Chicago Teachers Union officers and members hold... Read more »

Lists: Northside, Lane, Lincoln Park

Just three CPS schools made the new Newsweek best high schools list (not to be confused with the old one, which was based just on AP participation and achievement).  What do you think?

AM News: Central Office Raises & Waivers

No pay hike for CPS teachers, but raises for executives? Sun Times: Newly installed Chicago School Board members Wednesday will be asked to approve six-figure salaries for Brizard and four other new top executives…  Emanuel backs waiver letting school executive live in Winnetka Tribune:  While most CPS employees are required to live in the city, Mayor Rahm Emanuel... Read more »
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Update: Wrong About Urban Prep?

Education historian Diane Ravitch noted some holes in the claims and accomplishments of Urban Prep and several other reform success stories in a recent NYT oped, but Urban Prep head Tim King says Ravitch got it wrong over all (about poverty and achievement) and about Urban Prep in particular:  “To be sure, the test scores... Read more »