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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: School closings may be less than feared

Shutting a large number of schools would create too much upheaval, the commission on school closings said, and it is leaning toward a recommendation for closing far fewer schools than many have feared — possibly as few as 15, sources tell the Tribune.

OLD AND NEW COMBINED: Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Tuesday that the old Jones College Prep building, standing in the shadow of a gleaming new school, will incorporate the old and become one school, with about double the number of selective enrollment seats. With an additional 250 selective enrollment seats each grade, Jones will eventually be about 1,700 students. (Catalyst)

DEFINING THE FUTURE: Teach Plus held a conversation Tuesday evening with Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis to talk about the future of CTU and CPS.  Find real-time tweets of the discussion using the #teachpluschicago hashtag.

EVALUATION AGREEMENT: A landmark agreement to use student test scores for the first time to evaluate Los Angeles Unified instructors was approved by the teachers union Saturday. In a victory for the union, however, the pact limits the use of a controversial method of analyzing a teacher’s effect on student test scores known as value-added. United Teachers Los Angeles reported that 66 percent of 16,892 members who voted approved the agreement with the nation’s second-largest school district. L.A.  now joins Chicago, New York and many other cities in using testing data as one measure of a teacher’s effect on student academic progress. (Los Angeles Times)

ELEMENTARY TEACHER EXCESS: Data, while imprecise, suggest that some states are producing far more new teachers at the elementary level than will be able to find jobs in their respective states—even as districts struggle to find enough recruits in other certification fields. (Education Week)

MORE GRADUATES: The U.S. high school graduation rate is the highest since 1976, although more than a fifth of students are still failing to get their diploma in four years, the Education Department said in a study released Tuesday.


Bob Johnson wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

School closings

If schools are not closed; they certainly need to be turned around or the Principals and Assistants let go at many; because there is not a reason why so many of these schools have been on probation for so many years. Instead of them showing AYP they are going down. Other states are closing failing schools and it is making a bail of difference for those children to get a better education. It is shuttering buildings that cost the city millions of dollars to keep up. Should not be that way. And for a school that can hold 800 children; to only have 200 children; they can be consolidated. Old buildings torn down. They can be turned into Charters and least expensive teachers brought in. Where are they going to get the billion dollars from? It is not fair to Principals at Level 1 and Level 2 schools who have given efficient production. Then; it is just patting inefficient Principals on the backs and letting them continue taking those children's educations downhill. Something has to; and needs to be done about failing and underutilized schools .

Rod Estvan wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

re: Mr. Johnson's comment

I am unclear by what you mean when you wrote: "Other states are closing failing schools and it is making a bail of difference for those children to get a better education." Could you clarify your statement? Which states are you referencing and which studies of these states indicated that closing failing schools at a higher rate than in Illinois are demonstrating increased acadmic achievement for students impacted by the closings?

Rod Estvan

No trust wrote 1 year 51 weeks ago

# of school closings

CPS floats a list with 120+ school closings and now down-sizing to 15-50 could all be orchestrated to make CPS look "reasonable" and deserving of the trust of the community. BBB (or Emanuel) will make the final decision and the Board will approve it. That's how it works. Who believes that this hand-picked commission's recommendations are not exactly what the Mayor wanted to hear and paid for?

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