Jobs and schools promise to be top issues in next year’s city elections. The mayor’s education agenda faces its toughest test in the African-American communities that gave him strong support in 2011.
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In the News: CTU complaint accuses CPS of discrimination
The Chicago Teachers Union and four tenured teachers on Wednesday filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging that the Chicago Board of Education’s 2011 layoff policy has had a disparate impact on black teachers, the union announced in a press release.
The complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission contends that 43 percent of tenured teachers who were laid off in 2011 are black, even though only 29 percent of CPS' tenured staff is black, according to Crains. Catalyst Chicago has this For the Record item on teacher diversity in Illinois and CPS.
A study released this morning by the Consortium on Chicago School Research that CPS touted as proof of the success of turnarounds was released Wednesday—and instead showed little progress and added fuel to calls for the district to back off. (Catalyst)
The Tribune's story, on the other hand, says the Consortium study found "that targeted schools did improve even though students continued to score below district standards.
And, here's how the Sun-Times interprets the Consortium's findings: "a new study indicates Chicago’s 'turnaround' elementary schools produced better academic gains than other 'worst of the worst' schools that did not undergo similar reforms."
The Chicago Teachers Union said Wednesday that a new report by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago on Chicago’s destructive school turnaround policy could benefit from a dose of reality. The report must be considered in light of some important facts, the union said in a press release. Here's more from the union's statement: "The record of Chicago schools that have been closed and replaced with new school administrations, one of the four models studied in this report, reveals that these schools end up serving a new, and generally more advantaged pool of students. In essence, the school closing and turnaround policy - pushed on school communities as a so-called reform - only pushed struggling students out of school."
The Chicago Teachers Union will hold a news conference at 11 a.m. today to announce the filing of a lawsuit seeking injunctive relief to stop the Chicago Board of Education’s Feb. 22 approval and implementation of CPS’ plan to close or “turn around” various neighborhood schools, the union said in a media advisory sent out on Wednesday.
No decision on the phase-out of Crane High School should be made until school district officials analyze a “well-thought-out’’ Crane-proposed plan for the school’s rejuvenation, an independent hearing officer has recommended. Chicago School Board members are scheduled to vote on Crane’s fate and other school-action proposals on Feb. 22. (Sun-Times)
IN THE NATION
A survey shows that parents and educators prefer tests that are given to help shape instruction over those used to gauge students' year-end progress. (Education Week)
With two Los Angeles teachers accused of lewd acts on students, the district faces potential legal liability that could run into the millions of dollars. The district is also paying old staff and a replacement staff. At least two dozen students at the school have retained attorneys so far. (Los Angeles Times)
Joplin, Mo., where schools were devastated by a tornado last year, is taking a digital approach to rebuilding its education system. (Education Week)