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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: Three-quarters of CPS over class size limits

“Apples to Apples,” an independent investigation of Chicago Public Schools data, found that 76 percent of CPS elementary schools had entire grades above the recommended class size limit set by CPS in 2011. CPS’ recommended quota allocations on class size are 28 maximum students per teacher in grades Kindergarten – 2nd and 31 maximum students per teacher in grades 3-8.

The investigation by Raise Your Hand Illinois also found that 44 percent of schools had one to two grades above the recommended limits, 21 percent had three to four grades above the recommended limits, and 11 percent had five or more grades above the recommended limits. According to a study by independent research from the Editorial Projects in Education, by 2010, all but 15 states had laws restricting the number of students that may be included in a general education classroom, in some or all grades.  Illinois was not one of the states to impose class size restrictions, however, the Apples to Apples data shows that CPS class size averages were significantly above the Illinois state average class size range of 20.9 – 22.9 students per class in grades K-8.

A chart compiled by Raise Your Hand is attached below. (Cassandra West, press release)

Attempting to quiet critics of its charter expansion plans, Chicago Public Schools officials say they will get tough with privately run charter schools that are failing academically this year and could shut down those that aren't making the grade. CPS is accused by the teachers union and others of failing to invest in those schools even as the number of charter schools grows. (Tribune)

Chicago Public Schools officials on Wednesday unanimously approved a healthier snack and beverage policy that bans the sale of items like Gatorade, energy drinks and whole milk at schools. (NBC Chicago)

Chicago Public Schools will save approximately a half-million dollars in its waste hauling contract following action taken by the Chicago Board of Education Wednesday. (Press release)

A group of parents and community leaders called on the district to offer more alternative educational options like charter campuses. About 50 parents, students and community leaders from the Austin, Lawndale, Englewood, Humboldt Park and Roseland neighborhoods huddled outside the CPS administration building Tuesday evening, bringing attention to failing Chicago schools and asking district officials to replicate the successful ones. (Medill Reports)

IN THE NATION

Admission to one Baltimore public high school depends on whether students have done something so serious a regular district school won't have them anymore: assaulting classmates or staff members, possessing or distributing drugs, or wielding weapons. (Education Week)

Las Vegas, Tampa, and Dallas showed the fastest growth among districts where charter enrollment tops 10 percent, a study says. And, New Orleans public schools still have the highest “market share” of student enrollment in charters, according to the report from the Washington-based National Alliance for Public Charter Schools. (Education Week)

New findings show that money troubles interfere with the academic performance of about one-third of all college students, who report finances as a major source of stress. (The New York Times)

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class_size_chart_apples_to_apples.pdf348.74 KB

14 comments

Anonymous wrote 2 years 4 days ago

This is a great study-thank you catalyst for listing this and

raise your hand. This is 2011 data, for a # of schools listed--2012 class sizes are even higher.
Are you aware that the bilingual classroom's limit is 25 students?

Danny wrote 2 years 4 days ago

And yet CPS claims 200,000 Empty Seats

Thanks for this data. Three-quarters are over class limit sizes? (Kind of defeats the whole concept of "limit.") How can CPS claim so many empty "seats" in the face of this data? I was skeptical before, but after seeing this, I won't believe CPS claims until all the data is out there.

Anonymous wrote 2 years 4 days ago

its like

Last year I had 35 in a bilingual room and i was given a bad review to boot!!When tehy went ot gym there were 40 kids!

Anonymous wrote 2 years 4 days ago

class size

It could be that schools with large classes still have lots of unused space. It could be that in some cases CPS is keeping classes large so it doesn't have to hire extra teachers, e.g. one teacher for 36 kids instead of two for 18.

Joe Barns wrote 2 years 4 days ago

Some schools Are

There are a lot of schools that are under utilized. Many of the schools in the Englewood circle have a few children. Something need to be done there. Holmes; Dewey Academy;Libby; is in dire need of a new something. Not many children in these schools. All on probation; and a poor report card. The children deserve better.

JM Olson wrote 2 years 4 days ago

Class Size Hotline

Please report current class sizes confidentially to the Raise Your Hand Class Size Hotline 872-222-SIZE

Any data that we receive will be aggregated and published. Thank you.

Rosita Chatonda wrote 2 years 4 days ago

Congratualtions on a Wonderful Forum

The information received was extremely valuable. I would like to have a a copy of the Power POINT used if anyone knows where. My suggestion for next time is to have a forum where the real experts speak. The parents who have children in the system, veteran experienced teachers who have earned the right to represent our teachers. People who not only talk the talk but have proven that they can walk the walk. Of the three panelist, Payne was the only real credible and reliable source.
As we begin to educate parents , teachers and the community in regards to advocate for there community, without being a voice for organizations but for their children, we will see an authentic change in the school system.

Point of information wrote 2 years 3 days ago

Class size and the contract.

UPC had really dropped the ball on this some time ago. At my school we pressured the UPC (a caucus within CTU) delegate to file a grievance because our classes were exceeding 28. He told us that the contract stated that 140 students per teacher was the limit. Nowhere in the old contract did it state 140 per teacher but 28 per class. Because UPC leadership refused to pressure CPS on this issue, the board has proceeded to stuff more kids into a classroom than is acceptable. Some teachers are now facing over 35 students, many with IEP's, per class. And Rhambo calls this improvement? Moreover, thanks UPC; is CORE going to do anything?

helenkeller wrote 2 years 3 days ago

When will someone do a study

When will someone do a study of class size in the self-contained special education programs?

How about inclusion programs with 25 students?

The children with disabilities are dumped into gen ed rooms with very little support for the majority of the day. How about 40 students in a gen ed room because six students from the self-contained program come in for three subjects? In the suburbs there are special education aides to assist the sped students in the gen ed program. Not in CPS.....

northside wrote 2 years 2 days ago

insult to injury

Principals still want you to have individual differentiation when you have 15 reg ed kids, 6 special ed, and 13 ell kids crammed in one room. Cps is the problem but the principals still lower your rating for inefficient rotations....its a joke. Oh yeah you have no aide of course just 20 iep meetings and iep and bilingual audits from cps heads who neveeeer come to help you. Its very bad...

now we have the insult of following reach evaluations to the t

northside wrote 2 years 2 days ago

insult to injury

Principals still want you to have individual differentiation when you have 15 reg ed kids, 6 special ed, and 13 ell kids crammed in one room. Cps is the problem but the principals still lower your rating for inefficient rotations....its a joke. Oh yeah you have no aide of course just 20 iep meetings and iep and bilingual audits from cps heads who neveeeer come to help you. Its very bad...

now we have the insult of following reach evaluations to the t

helenkeller wrote 2 years 1 day ago

How about when you know your

How about when you know your school needs/qualifies for another special education position and the SSA (most are in desperate need of anger management sessions) spews forth with, PARF 'til ya BARF!!!!! and cackles like the witch in the Wizard of Oz?

Mamapajami wrote 2 years 1 day ago

My son's Kindergarten class has 42 students- 1 teacher

It should be illegal to have 42 kindergarten students in a class with one teacher- no assistants and no aides. However, CPS does not see this as a problem. My son's school wants to hire another Kindergarten teacher but last week parents were informed that CPS has denied this request as they do not consider this an overcrowding issue. It is not only a quality of education issue but a safety one as well. A student-teacher ratio this high is not acceptable in most states and many suburbs. Why is this acceptable in Chicago?

Northside Teacher wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

42 kids

Yes 42 kids is WAY too many ...but does the teacher at least have the Help of her principal....so many principals just give these poor teachers grief and ask why they don't have children working in cooperative groups , or why students aren't progressing at the expected value added pace., or having their ratings lowered on Reach assesments (which makes no mention of class size)...or you can have a "human" principal that gives REAL HELP..not just tips and more work. They send in aides and help make copies and file and get volunteers(plural) and help scold (yes i will use the term) unruly children!!

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