A raft of past programs have failed to substantially improve the reading skills of middle grade and high school students. CPS is trying once again, as part of a federal project that aims to help teens learn how to analyze complex non-fiction.
Bill Gerstein on school choice in Austin
Catalyst spoke with Bill Gerstein of Austin Polytechnical about the new high school choices that have come online in Austin.
More on Austin High with West Side Health Authority organizers
Catalyst discussed the rollout of Renaissance 2010 with two West Side Health Authority organizers: Virgil Crawford and Anthony Bowman.
Rickover students and the decision to commute
In an effort to better understand school choice decision making, Catalyst spoke with five students who commute significant distances to attend Rickover Naval Academy in Edgewater.
WHA CEO Jackie Reed on Austin High
Catalyst discussed the district's rollout of Renaissance 2010 in embattled Austin with veteran community activist Jackie Reed.
City Voices November 2008: Teaching Democracy
Huge numbers of young people learned about the political process first-hand in the recent election by volunteering on campaigns and even voting for the first time. In Chicago, students who are part of the Mikva Challenge worked for candidates and traveled as far as New Hampshire to get a lesson in democracy first-hand. Guests: Rich Feffer of the Mikva Challenge, Kenwood Academy student Bahati Mwitula.
City Voices October 2008: Community connections
Education experts say that schools with the toughest challenges have to build bridges to the community and to parents, in order to improve academically. But building those bridges isn't easy. Guests: Kurt Jones, principal of Libby Elementary; Sharon Howard, a local school council member at Libby; Chris Brown of the Local Initiatives Support Corporation
Editor Veronica Anderson on WBEZ's Eight Forty-Eight
Anyone working in schools in rough neighborhoods knows it's hard to build trust between teachers and parents. The September/October issue of Catalyst In Depth reports that relationships between teachers and parents are key to reforming failing urban schools. Editor Veronica Anderson spoke about the issue on Chicago Public Radio (WBEZ 91.5 FM).
City Voices September 2008: One-on-one with Barbara Eason-Watkins
CPS Chief Education Officer Barbara Eason-Watkins talks about what's ahead for the new school year. Highlights include Renaissance 2010, writing tests, attendance and more kids taking algebra.
City Voices August 2008: Turnaround Schools
Two high schools, Orr and Harper, joined the district's turnaround program this year. The schools have new principals and a revamped staff. Guests: Jammie Poole, principal at Orr; Kenyatta Butler-Stansberry, co-principal at Harper.
City Voices July 2008: Community organizing
Jitu Brown with the Kenwood Oakland Community Organization talks with Catalyst about community input and schools.