The historic closing of 49 elementary schools in Chicago left many parents bitter and feeling left out as they try to get involved in new schools. Yet parent engagement is essential for school improvement, and principals are faced with the challenge of building trust at schools that scored poorly on surveys of parent involvement.
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Laptops would help with typing skills. The problem always seemed to be the poor wireless connections.
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In the News: Mayor looks next to school closings
Chicago Public Schools have 600,000 seats and only 400,000 students, underscoring the need to “consolidate” under-utilized schools that should been closed over the last decade, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Wednesday. (Sun-Times)
Chicago Public Schools officials have asked several charter networks if they would take over failing schools, for the first time making a direct connection between the city's plan to shut down neighborhood schools while increasing the number of privately run charters. (Tribune)
On Tuesday night, the Lincoln Elementary School LSC voted 10-2 in favor of demanding that CPS build a new middle school on the site of the former Children's Memorial Hospital. (Sun-Times)
IN THE STATE
Congress is considering deep cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) — the most important food assistance program in the United States. The proposed cuts to SNAP total $16.5 billion over 10 years, which would cause tens of thousands of families and children in Illinois to lose food assistance, according to Voices for Illinois Children.
The Illinois State Board of Education announced it has awarded more than $39.2 million under the School Maintenance Grant Program to help 691 districts and vocational centers make necessary repairs and improvements on existing facilities. The dollar-for-dollar program provides up to $50,000 in matching funds for the maintenance and upkeep of buildings or structures used for educational purposes. (ISBE)
IN THE NATION
After four years of layoffs, teaching jobs are finally coming back. Public school hiring rose this summer to its highest level in six years.Local school districts added 79,000 education jobs this July through September, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That's the strongest summer hiring since 2006. (CNN Money)
Cincinnati Public Schools is drawing criticism from some in the business community after failing to bring successful charter schools into its portfolio. (Cincinnati.com)