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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: Unprepared to teach Common Core

Even as the Common Core State Standards are being put into practice across most of the country, nearly half of teachers feel unprepared to teach them, especially to disadvantaged students, according to a new survey.

TEACHING CHARACTER: Many school administrators are realizing character education, once thought of as an intrusion on the school day, can actually help students perform better. (Education Week)

PAY INCREASES: Teachers in Glen Ellyn Elementary District 41 could receive annual raises of more than 3 percent over a three-year period under terms of a new contract made public Thursday. (Daily Herald)

TALKING CONTRACTS: Grayslake Elementary District 46 school board candidates are addressing how they would approach talks on a new contract for teachers, who went on strike over pay and benefits in January. (Daily Herald)

OUTSOURCING BUSING: The strife over Palatine Township Elementary District 15's decision to explore outsourcing its busing system has spilled over to contract negotiations. The District Transportation Union this week posted a copy of the board of education's initial proposal for a new collective bargaining agreement on its website and Facebook page. (Daily Herald)

FUNDING PUBLIC EDUCATION: Two years after spending cuts of $5.4 billion to schools, budget writers in the State Senate on Thursday approved a $1.4 billion increase for public education in the first clear signal that the new Legislature may pour money back into public schools. (The New York Times)


Anonymous wrote 1 year 45 weeks ago

common core

common core is no more than words on a piece of paper....why is it being treated like they are golden tablets from still doesn't account for varied student abilities, poverty, resources, technology etc. This is why teachers are having the end its no different than the once "all knowing" state standards. yes they are an improvement...but they are no miracle..the miracle will be the day ALLL students walk into a clean, modern, safe, and caring school.....then we can talk about "common core" standards. until then, there is nothing common in a class of 35 kids in one teacher classroom with high poverty with 3 computers vs. a class of 18 in a modern, clean, classroom with all the technology that apple has to offer!! really get real people!!.

George N. Schmidt wrote 1 year 45 weeks ago

Common Core worse than Chicago CASE was...

Of course teachers are "unprepared" to teach the "Common Core." The main reason is that for all the talk and hoopla, the Common Core doesn't really exist. As the former Texas State Schools Supt. noted, he was asked to sign on in support of the "Common Core" before there was one. And there still is none for the most part. How can teachers with any self-respect teach a fictional curriculum (that ironically is trying to bar the teaching of fiction)?

Only in the fantasy world of Arne Duncan's U.S. Department of Education could this nonsense have gotten this far. But, then, the stuff all originated in Chicago, the seedbed of such corporate "school reform" nonsense. And Arne Duncan, who never had to prepare and teach a lesson in the real world of the public schools he now chieftains over, continues to prattle as if these things were real.

The main reality is that millions of dollars that could have gone to real classrooms has been wasted away on the Common Core. Thanks to "education reform" and its corporate masters' nonsense.

The real fun will begin when teachers and parents get a look at the actual realities of the Common Core as they hit our classrooms. And believe me, I will. With my youngest child still in second grade, my family will be demanding every explanation of every iteration of this nonsense.

And as time unfolds, I suspect we will have to begin to do more than organize against it, since it's educational malpractice, a violation of the rules of the American Psychological Association (it's an experiment on human subjects -- our children), and purveyed by montebanks like Arne Duncan and the majority of corporate hacks now inhabiting the upper rungs of the Race To The Top menagerie at the U.S. Department of Education.

Anonymous wrote 1 year 45 weeks ago

common shmommon

Same cat new bell. That's what's"new". I'd like to know who Charlotte Danialson is scewing to have her bogus crap pushed by Arne Duncan. She is now a VERY rich person. That framework is nothing but common sense teaching. What's so new? What's new is all the $$$$$ being wasted on a 4 part joke. There is still no common core for science, or the arts, or PE or computer science or music ect.....

Anonymous wrote 1 year 45 weeks ago

danielson is common sense?

there is nothing common sense about charlotte danielson? have you read it? can you explain where you find "common sense" it an excerpt for the rubric a teacher is supposed to follow? Please tell me even Socrates or Dewey followed this classroom style?

"Teacher coordinates in-depth knowledge of content, students’ various needs, and available resources (including technology), to design units and lessons. Learning activities are fully aligned to standards-based learning objectives and are designed to engage students in high-level cognitive activities suitable for every student. The units and lessons are paced appropriately and are differentiated, as appropriate, for individual learners. Units and lessons include grade-appropriate levels of texts and other materials and task complexity, requiring students to provide evidence of their reasoning, so every student can access the content. The lesson or unit has a clear structure that incorporates student choice, allows for different pathways aligned with diverse student needs, and uses instructional groups intentionally."

Ben Jefferson wrote 1 year 45 weeks ago

Underutilization meetings

Dewey Academy laid information on the reason for under utilization as to having new staff. New staff that covers a reason that the school has been on probation for 5 years in a row. A school that stated that it has a Library when there is no Library there. All the books were thrown out and a Media Center was put in its place. Previous staff had always worked with the students and previous years were not on probation . A school where there is limited supplies and resources for the teachers to teach with. A school that can hold 630 students but now has less than 270 students. Only 2 classrooms on the 1st floor. There is a rash of discipline problems that attributes to the school being on probation. There is no truancy office. It is not a top growth school with students meeting by 0.3%. It is a disservice to students to stay in a school whose school have set flat on the ground for the past 3 years. Question is to why this school will not be taking the ISAT and requested not to show growth in 3 to 5 years. A steer attention should be geared to schools where students are not prospering. Hopefully BBB will hold these schools accountable. Some Principals have had friends at 125 ; and members on the L
SC that has siblings who are working at the schools that have given Principals top ratings even though their schools are on and have been on probation for years. It is time that students should be allowed to go to higher performing schools than under utilized and very low performing schools to get a better education. There is not a need to continue with the same Administration and Staff if the students are continuing sinking. The children need a better learning environment. Under previous administration the Dewey was not on probation. Change in administration and it has been going down hill ever since.

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