Grad Rate Jumps 4 Pct, Says CPS

Grad Rate Jumps 4 Pct, Says CPS

CPS says that grad rates are up 4 percent over last year — what do you think?  Meantime, an old video of Karen Lewis suggests she might have changed her mind about job training. Plus: Dyett, Youth Alternative, etc.  In comments: charter schools already started, and longer school days should or shouldn’t require extra pay. Elsewhere, LA is doing its iPad contract over.  More Chicago education news throughout the day at @district299.


CPS graduation rate jumps 4% to record high Chicago Sun-Times: With the start of the school year less than a week away, it is a good time to step back and consider where we are, the progress we’ve made, and the work we have yet to do. W

Emanuel, Byrd-Bennett say CPS graduation rate up 4% in 1 year Chicago Sun-Times:  The latest evidence of progress at Chicago Public Schools is a record high school graduation rate of 69.4 percent for the last school year, a 4 percent increase from just a year ago.


Old video suggests shift in Karen Lewis’ views on job training Chicago Sun-Times: Now, a videotaped interview of Lewis has surfaced in which the possible mayoral challenger appears to be arguing just the opposite.

Teachers get creative to find time for professional development Catalyst: On a sunny August morning, several dozen teachers from a range of schools crowded into the cafeteria of Prieto Math and Science Academy in Belmont-Cragin. No children were in the room. On this day, teachers were the students, and the class was the Lesson Study Alliance’s summer institute.


Dyett Protesters Say CPS is Urging Students to Abandon School DNAinfo: Dyett High School students are being urged by CPS to abandon the school immediately, before its final year begins, according to protesters trying to keep the school open.

Latino Youth Alternative School teachers to vote on union contract Catalyst: Nearly five years after they started organizing to form a union, teachers at the alternative Latino Youth High School in Pilsen say they’re preparing to vote on their first labor contract.

North Shore schools to add program for at-risk students Tribune: Local officials on the North Shore are hoping to soon launch a new education program that would provide vocational training to eligible students at Glenview’s Wagner Farm.


LA schools cancel iPad contracts after KPCC publishes internal emails KPCC: Three days after KPCC published internal emails showing top L.A. Unified officials and executives from Pearson and Apple met and discussed bringing tablet-driven education software to the classroom, the school district announced Monday it will cancel the contract with Apple and Pearson and open its one-to-one technology project to new bids.

D.C. Extends Day At 25 Schools, Hoping That More Time Means Better Scores WAMU: Students at 25 D.C. public schools will stay in school longer every day, a move that city officials hope will help struggling students catch up with their peers.

Ferguson schools reopen, offer calm amid chaos AP: Schools in Ferguson welcomed back students from their summer breaks on Monday, providing the children with a much-needed break from the raucous street protests and police patrols that have gripped the St. Louis suburb since a white officer killed an unarmed black man more than two weeks ago.

A Tale Of Two Dueling Childhood Education Initiatives Seattle Public Radio: This fall, Seattle voters will choose between two early childhood education ballot initiatives. If you want to weigh in on the issue, you’ll have to pick a favorite – even if you want neither to pass. KUOW Education Reporter Ann Dornfeld gives us the latest on the two competing ballot initiatives .

Michigan Unions Brace For Teacher Opt-out Decision AP: Many of the 112,000 active educators and school workers in the Michigan Education Association can now leave the union and stop paying fees under the law that took effect last year. Other major unions, covered by multi-year contracts, won’t reach the opt-out point until 2015 or later.

Support staff growth modest here, while nationally it explodes Seattle Times: While public school enrollment in Washington has surged by more than 23 percent since 1990, the state still employs roughly the same number of school support staff as it did a generation ago, making us either admirably lean or in dire need of more classroom aides – depending on your perspective.


Rick Scott Unveils New Education Initiatives To Calm Common Core Critics Reuters: Florida’s Republican governor, Rick Scott, unveiled two new education initiatives on Monday aimed at calming critics of “common core” national curriculum standards and countering his main Democratic rival’s attacks on his record.

Generation Later, Poor Are Still Rare at Elite Colleges NYT: A series of federal surveys of selective colleges found virtually no change from the 1990s to 2012 in enrollment of students who are less well off — less than 15 percent by some measures — even though there was a huge increase over that time in the number of such students going to college.

Turnitin And The Debate Over Anti-Plagiarism Software NPR: One company and its algorithms are changing the way America’s schools handle classroom ethics.

Is Google’s Free Software A Good Deal For Educators? NPR: Classroom enables a teacher to create a “class” at the touch of a button. She or he can upload syllabus materials, whether text, audio, or video, and send out assignments on the class news feed.

New teachers, nervous as kindergartners, prepare for the first day of school Washington Post: Along with the hundreds of thousands of students heading back to school across the region this week and next, there are hundreds of new teachers, some of them leading a classroom for the first time. And some of those teachers are just as nervous as the students.

Op-Ed Contributor: To Keep Poor Students in School, Provide Social Services NYT: Poor students don’t just need teachers. They need social workers.


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  • Why won't @urbanprep tell us what happened to the first 107 kids who graduated in 2010? @lollybowean #edjourn

  • In reply to Alexander Russo:

    Lets remember Karen Lewis' 2012 Sun Times editorial bashing Urban Prep, including:

    “And then of course, there is the dismal achievement outcome of the majority of charters. Urban Prep brags about its 100 percent college-bound rate when the average ACT score of its student is only 17.2. Where are those students going to college?”

  • In reply to Donn:

    .....and the truth hurts....

  • In reply to district299reader:

    What truth would that be? It's bizarre that an educator wouldn't understand that the effectiveness of an school is determined by growth. Unlike Lane, Urban Prep doesn't choose the condition of it's entering students.

    So here is Karen Lewis, the selective enrollment teacher, dishing on a school taking on the most challenging student group. That would be pathetic for a union boss, not just an educator running to be mayor of everyone.

    The teachers at Union Prep provide more instruction than she ever did. They chose their path. Karen Lewis choice is to complain about the "unfunded longer day" when the CTU was told they were going to spend more than 5.5 hours with students.

    Ironically, the article answered Lewis' rhetorical question: "Where are those students going to college?" Georgetown, Karen. They're going to Georgetown.

  • In reply to Donn:

    None of the neighborhood elementary schools or high schools are allowed to choose the students yet CPS closes down "underperforming schools" Wouldn't you say that Urban Prep is underperforming? Yet, they are held up by the media as the model school and posters such as yourself. It would seem to me that with a select student population, more money than a neighborhood high school, more instructional minutes and all of the highly touted teachers (so much better than the rest of us) that the scores would be higher. Why won't Urban Prep give out the info to the Tribune?

  • In reply to district299reader:

    From the numbers available, Urban Preps growth to ACT is quite good. Why would an ACT that is close to the CPS average indicate an under performing school? Taking student entering with a 12 EPAS and getting them to a 17 ACT is considerably better than average performance.

    CPS has closed poor performing charter high schools. Lewis was picking on Urban Prep because they're high profile and have a good reputation. Can't have that.

    If families want to attend schools like Urban Prep and Noble, then some traditional high schools will need to be closed. Can't have those seventy minute class periods at a CTU school, now can we?

    I've had multiple family members work at south side high schools. The young men at urban prep are undoubtedly working harder at their school than they would have had they attended their attendance boundary school. That's a problem for Karen Lewis and CTU true believers.

    I'm sure teachers salaries at UP are under the CPS average for high schools, so why are they "highly touted teachers". They did step up to do a bigger job. They do, as individuals, deserve credit for that choice.

  • In reply to Donn:

    Not sure which UP campus you are referring to, Donn, but I taught at a co-location HS with UP and their teachers arrived much later than our earliest arrivals and usually left before us. Sure, to each his own, but as far as arrival and departure times, the teachers there were nothing special.

  • In reply to Donn:

    When all you do all year is cram for some test
    of course the scores go up.
    But the quality of life that is a high school experience
    does not exist. Donn do me a favor and pool your
    family .let us know how many charter schools have
    a yearbook?Football, baseball, gym class, how about
    after school dances?
    All charter schools represent modern,taxpayer supported parochial
    schools.In some cases they have so many students of one ethnic
    group it is almost raciest.But when your primary concern is to keep
    us from them that happens.poor kids no fun,no lasting memories,
    just rote for them phoney choice for their parents and money for the investors.

  • In reply to rbusch:

    What investors, Bob?

    Your characterization of a south side high school doesn't match your own descriptions of the classrooms at the same type of school. You also left out the fights between classes.

    You also don't seem to have any idea of what's available at charters. Most teenagers have plenty of energy to do much better in the classroom without missing out on other important experiences.

    You comment highlights the major unbalance in most arguments of the validity of charter policy. Many/most charter high school educators have worked in traditional high need schools. But CTU members simply imagine the facts that fit what they wish to believe.

    I don't know what's available at UP. It's up to the parent to decide on the fit between their child and the school. I do know whats available at Noble:

    The jazz band at my large, affluent high school was not nearly this good:

    My PE classes were a joke compared to this:

    Oh look, football and basketball

    Hanging with the pres:

    Did you lose track of the potential, Bob?


    Why isn't used at more schools? Our local Catholic High School uses it but not the local public school.

  • The Chicago Clique and the War on Public Education | Diane Ravitch's blog

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