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Drugs in schools

Most drug violations in CPS involve an ounce or less of marijuana. Schools are quick to call police, yet rarely have the resources to offer education, counseling or other non-punitive help to students.

In the News: Civil rights groups call for new education agenda; debating school reform

Seven leading civil rights groups, including the NAACP and the National Urban League, called on U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to dismantle core pieces of his education agenda, arguing that his emphases on expanding charter schools, closing low-performing schools, and using competitive rather than formula funding are detrimental to low-income and minority children. The groups released their own education policy framework and launched the National Opportunity to Learn campaign to advance their ideas. They also want Duncan to make big changes to his draft proposal for reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

Seven leading civil rights groups, including the NAACP and the National Urban League, called on U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to dismantle core pieces of his education agenda, arguing that his emphases on expanding charter schools, closing low-performing schools, and using competitive rather than formula funding are detrimental to low-income and minority children. The groups released their own education policy framework and launched the National Opportunity to Learn campaign to advance their ideas. They also want Duncan to make big changes to his draft proposal for reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.They also claim, USAToday reports, that the $4.35 billion "Race to the Top" grant competition — a
program with a goal of spurring innovative reform in states — leaves
out many minority students.

Toni Preckwinkle, 4th Ward alderman and Democratic nominee for Cook
County Board president, questions the latest enrollment figures at the
city's elite high schools. (Chicago News Cooperative)

Avani Patel of the Tribune's editorial board outlines five education
reform laws
recently enacted in Illinois and five changes you can expect
to see if Illinois wins a Race to the Top grant.

Gov. Pat Quinn signed into law on July 21 House Bill 5481, which will make it easier for low-income public schools to receive state funding for gifted educational programs. State Sen. Kimberly Lightford (D-4th Dist.) was the chief sponsor for the bill that now gives all students access to gifted programs. The bill amends the Gifted and Talented Children Article of the School Code, changing provisions concerning approval of local programs for the education of gifted and talented children that a local program may be approved for funding by the State Board of Education. (Defender)

J. Erik Fyrwald, chairman of Nalco, joins the Chicago Public Education Fund Board of Directors. (release)

In the state

Lynne Panega, the new superintendent of Lake Park High School District 108 talks with the Daily Herald about how she hopes to help students succeed.

In the nation

Paul Vallas, the former CPS chief who was brought in to revive New Orleans' troubled public schools, left a legacy of charter school expansion and rising test scores, although not all of his reforms have been successful, PBS' "NewsHour" says in a video report. Vallas is leaving the job after three years.

Milwaukee Teachers Union holding out for federal cash. (Heartland Institute)

Interest in online schools for kindergarten through 12th grade is surging as new virtual offerings flood the market, leading education experts to warn that not all programs are equal. (Sacramento Bee)

4 comments

Obama is building a legacy of failure in Education! wrote 4 years 9 weeks ago

In the News: Civil rights groups call for new education agenda;

It will takes years to clean up Obama's mess. Hiring the challenged Arne "Duh" Duncan for running the department of Education matches the same boner pulled by Daley on hiring incompetent CEO's to run the Chicago Public Schools. Bad leadership at the top leads to a dysfunctional system. RTTT is really about companies getting rich at the expense of children in the classroom. It is criminal what Obama is doing. He will veto the Obey bill to keep teachers in classrooms and throw all his support behind the RTTT. Remember the RTTT is nothing more than an expanded Ren 2010 program done here. Obama has lost my trust.

Low income gifted programs? wrote 4 years 9 weeks ago

In the News: Civil rights groups call for new education agenda;

I wish Quinn and the supports of the bill to give low income schools a better gifted education program had bothered to read Malcolm Gladwell's Outliers. The gifted programs will end in vain, unfortunately. I'd love to see low income students who have potential live up to that potential, but it is so rare and unlikely that it'll happen. :(

Also, to the Obama hater, please realize the situation that the education system is in is NOT the fault of the current present or the current Secretary of Education. This disaster has been created over years of poor budgeting, poor leadership, and a major shift in how society views the importance of education and teachers. This is not Obama or Duncan's fault any more than it was Bush or Margaret Spelling's fault. One person does not make or break a system; it takes a village to build or destroy the educational system. Unfortunately, the village has destroyed the system and it will be up to the village to work together to make it whole again.

I'm not a supporter or a hater of Obama. But I don't like when people wrongfully blame the president for the woes of society. Change doesn't happen over night, it happens over a life time. I am sorry you are disappointed in our president, but he doesn't have a magic wand to fix every school and district in every state. The individual states and districts have to put in the necessary effort. So far, the state of Illinois has failed year after year to budget appropriately and run itself effectively. This isn't the president's fault -- it's the fault of every citizen in Illinois. We need to elect better leaders; we need to demand better behavior and spending. WE need to fix the education system, not wait for someone to do it for us.

dear "low income" wrote 4 years 9 weeks ago

In the News: Civil rights groups call for new education agenda;

BTW I voted for him!! It's not all his fault but he is not inocent by any reason. WHy did he chose Arne Dunca, a guy who NEVER taught at a school who just shot to the top??

Can you explain "race to the top then"? Basing schools and teachers only on test scores (are you a teacher do you know what these tests are all about?)It is a contuation and strengthening of Bush's NCLB? Or why he threatened to veto a bill that would divert some funds from Race to the Top to save teachers jobs? Or why he hasnt publically given ANY SYMPATHY to displaced teachers?? Why is he going to the Ford plant to "talk" to Unions but no to other unions IE teachers??

I know all is not his fault...but teachers have some reasons? 2k cps teachers lost their jobs most probably voted for him? Losing your livelyhood is not exactly a thing we look for in a president....

BTW I voted for him!! It's not all his fault but he is not inocent by any reason. WHy did he chose Arne Dunca, a guy who NEVER taught at a school who just shot to the top??

Obama's Mistake was hiring Duncan and Non-Educators! wrote 4 years 9 weeks ago

In the News: Civil rights groups call for new education agenda;

Obama's actions speak for themselves. Obama did not have to hire the non-educator Duncan nor the non-educators into this Education Department. Obama sold out the department of Education. Look at the list of names running the show in the department of ed. It is not about "innovation" but the selling of the public education.
It is important to know that countries with high performing school districts and schools, don't do charters. They invest in their teachers and they provide them with resources and time to collaborate on planning, instruction and evaluation during the school day. They help build strong professional organizations in each school. It is more noble effort than the "other planet" bogus effort on the part of Duncan. Duncan and Obama are selling a bill of goods that is fraught with deception. All I say is follow the money trail on that debacle! Follow the money trail. It is not going into the classrooms.

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