Watch Brizard "Town Hall"

Thanks to a very kind reader here’s a link to the Brizard “Town Hall” from Wednesday morning, during which he laid out the new central office org chart and the collaboratives and networks.  [Remember to hit “play” in the upper left hand corner to get things started.] There’s also a letter that goes along with the meeting, inviting you to check it out.  If only it were embeddable and CPS just sent me this stuff directly to you to share.

From: Jean Claude Brizard
Sent: Fri 7/29/2011 6:15 PM
Subject: Letter from Jean-Claude Brizard

Dear Colleagues,

It has been an exciting week here at CPS as we have begun to implement the first phase of an organizational redesign, and I want to thank so many of you for attending the Town Hall Meeting to learn more.

We believe this new structure will establish greater coherence and reinvent CPS, ensuring we are all better prepared to support our school leaders and improve student achievement.

If you were unable to attend the meeting, we encourage you to view the webinar presentation at (hit the play button to begin the presentation).

As we explained, to better reflect the new CPS vision, we are redesigning the Areas into a more cohesive, neighborhood- and community-based set of Networks. This shift will create more effective PreK-12 collaboration and result in greater support of principals, teachers, and students.

As a result of this transition, there will be some immediate changes impacting the Areas:

•       First, we will be calling the individual elementary and high school Areas “Networks,” and the elementary/high school networks will be grouped geographically to form a “Collaborative.”

•       The Chief Area Officer title will be changing to “Chief of Elementary Schools” and “Chief of High Schools,” to reflect accountability for the school portfolio.

•       With the old Area boundaries redrawn to keep neighborhoods and communities whole, each portfolio of schools and principals is changing.

•       Finally, the new Network leaders will work collaboratively to create a seamless PreK-12 learning community. There will be a climate of professional collaboration and sharing of best practices by establishing structures that foster shared learning, information and resource exchange across schools, networks and within the collaborative.

To view the Map of Networks and Collaboratives, visit  To view a list of schools and managing Chiefs per Network, visit

We are excited to take these first steps and ask for your continued support as we move the District forward. I am confident that if we work together, we can continue to make great progress in helping each and every child succeed in the classroom.


Jean-Claude Brizard

Chicago Public Schools | CEO


Mark your calendar for the first day of school!

Early Start (Track E): 8.8.11 / Regular Track: 9.6.11



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  • Flying by the seat of their pants. Brizard says," structures that foster shared learning, information and resource exchange across schools, networks and within the collaborative." This is a pipe dream for more than a couple of reasons. There are no effective communication mechanisms in place. Google Apps would have worked as a very good start on building collaboration within each school and hopefully through the district. There are more than a few examples of teachers leveraging the power of Google Apps with their students and fellow teachers, in improving teaching and learning.

    If the best the CIO can do for us is First Class, then we have a problem. While there is talk of the connection to the "real world" in terms of careers and use of new technology to get things done, CPS staff and students are left in the dark. It is no wonder businesses ask for work visas for foreigners to fill in vacancies that require high technical skill sets and the ability to collaborate in teams. ( I am not against foreign visas) It seems that we do not provide for our teachers and students tools that are part of the present and future work place. We need to give our students the ability to compete for the top jobs in the new economy and hopefully invent some to employ others.

    Oh.. don't give us anything like CPS University, possibly the worst web service in Chicago! Ten clicks to get from point a to b.

  • Watched the webinar and overall the reorganization and approach makes a lot of sense. The problem will be the lack of resources and people to make it happen. They can get some value by realignment and increased accountability and collaboration, but there is still no one to do the every day actual work and more cuts will have to be made.

  • This looks totally ideal. All these tinny details are made with lot of background knowledge. I like it a great deal. This was a beneficial post and I think it can be rather easy to see from the other comments too that this post is well written and helpful Theater Seats

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