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: CPS ignores chronic truancy problem
Nearly 32,000 Chicago students in public elementary schools miss four weeks or more of class in a year, but the cash-strapped district does little to stem a devastating problem, according to a special report by the Tribune.
The Tribune explains how it analyzed the attendance data provided by CPS. Reporters framed their request for attendance data in ways that would make it impossible to identify or track any individual child.
Chicago has all but abandoned anti-truancy programs for elementary school students, but outreach workers in Galesburg, a city of 32,000, demonstrate there are effective ways to get children back in class. (Tribune)
Stand Up Chicago, a coalition of labor unions and community groups, and the Chicago Teachers Union will hold a citywide rally Monday "against school closings, corporate welfare and the ongoing attack on neighborhood schools that serve low-income, African American and Latino students," according to the union. The rally kicks off at 11 a.m. at Cityfront Plaza, at Illinois and St. Clair streets. The demonstration intends to bring attention to plight of the city’s public schools and the school board’s threat to shut down scores of neighborhood schools that are underutilized, while it continues to open new charter operations. (Press release)
Gatorade, vitamin drinks and even whole milk would be barred from sale in Chicago Public Schools during school hours under a new “Healthy Snack and Beverage” policy up for a school board vote this week. (Sun-Times)
IN THE STATE
The Geneva teachers union Saturday filed an unfair labor practice charge against Geneva Community Unit District 304, two days ahead of its impending strike. (Daily Herald)
IN THE NATION
Cuts to teachers' benefits championed by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker offset about two-thirds of the reductions to school revenue resulting from his budget last year, limiting but not eliminating job losses in districts able to make the best use of these savings, according to a study being released Monday. (Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)