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The race for City Hall

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.

In the News: Digging into teacher evaluations

Teacher effectiveness expert Charlotte Danielson and the Urban Education Institute's Sara Ray Stoelinga were at Julian Middle School in Oak Park last night to talk to teachers, administrators, school board members and parents about making teacher evaluations meaningful as districts around the state begin implementing their new systems.

Catalyst captured the presentations on Storify, a web tool that compiles social media.

Changes to the length of next year's school day, a continuing budget deficit and ongoing teacher contract talks are providing a challenge for Chicago Public Schools principals as they prepare for next fall, the Tribune reports several school leaders as saying.

In effort to eliminate the anxiety for many Chicago students who fear being the victim of gang activity as they wait for a bus, Chicago Public Schools has implemented a new system inside the schools where monitors at the exits of the schools will display the whereabouts of their bus and how close they are. (Imperfect Parent)

CPS is using ‘bus tracker’ technology for student safety. (CBS Chicago)

Illinois education officials say cases of cheating on state exams by teachers and principals are on the rise and the state is investigating suspicious patterns on the Illinois Standards Achievement Test, which is taken by every third through eighth grade student. (WBEZ)

A report by the Schott Foundation for Public Education found that poor and minority students have fewer opportunities to attend New York City's best public schools largely because of where they live. (WNYC/NYT)

More states are requiring teacher-candidates to take—and pass—licensing tests in reading before they can move into the classroom. (Education Week)

Former President Bill Clinton on Tuesday praised school art programs for teaching discipline and creativity to students, crediting his music lessons as a child for his success as a politician. (

Prolific commentator and education historian Diane Ravitch writes for her Bridging Differences blog she just doesn't understand former DCPC Schools Chancellor Michelle Rhee. Here's a bit: "I am trying to understand Michelle Rhee. She has allied herself with the most right-wing governors in the nation, yet she claims to be a Democrat. She has worked with Republican Rick Scott in Florida, Republican John Kasich in Ohio, Republican Chris Christie in New Jersey, Republican Rick Snyder in Michigan, among others. Any governor who wants to cut teachers’ rights and benefits can call on her to stand with him. Wherever there is a governor eager to dismantle and privatize public education, she is there at his side." For the rest, click here.

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