Most drug violations in CPS involve an ounce or less of marijuana. Schools are quick to call police, yet rarely have the resources to offer education, counseling or other non-punitive help to students.
Join the conversation
We encourage our readers to leave comments and engage in dialogue about our stories. But before you do, please check out our "rules of the road."
Recent Notebook Entries
- Comings and Goings: Slavin, WITS/Boundless Readers, Mazany
- Take 5: UNO's shaky finances, 36 kids in a class, school lunches, NYC preschool for the rich
- Preschool expansion via 'social impact' bonds
- Take 5: Charter slow down, striking teachers and public education in politics
- Gay, transgender students seek more support
Right Now On Notebook
YOU miss the point. Biliteracy, triliteracy, or language savants are not the point. The State of Illinois needs to butt out. Illinois ranks 48th in The Best and Worst Run States in America: A...
I see you miss the point of bi-literacy. I agree students are to be proficient in reading and in math. However, having bi-literate citizens means that they proficiently read and write in two...
Subscribe to catalyst-chicago.org by e-mail
In the News: Clout opened door to spot at Payton Prep
Greg Hinz at Crain's reports on how potential GOP gubernatorial candidate and wealthy venture capitalist Bruce Rauner used his clout to get his daughter into Walter Payton College Prep High School by placing a call to former CPS chief Arne Duncan, according to sources with first-hand knowledge of the matter. Rauner owned a suburban home and his daughter could have attended wealthy New Trier High.
PROTESTS AND BOYCOTTS: The school closing debate led to dueling protests Wednesday morning outside Chicago Public Schools headquarters. Students from various area high schools boycotted the second day of standardized testing to protest the role of testing as a factor in schools landing on the school closure list. A group called Charter Parents United chanted, "Our child, our choice, hear our voice," saying they wanted equal funding for charter schools and for the district to hear their voices too. (Tribune)
STUDENTS WALK OUT: Dozens of Chicago students boycotted a required standardized test on Wednesday in protest of high stakes testing and the city’s plans to close 54 schools as part of deficit reduction measures. The walkout is the latest in a series of community and union protests of the March 21 announcement. (MSNBC)
"UNDER-RESOURCED, OVER-TESTED': About 100 high school students on Wednesday skipped the second day of a mandatory state test to march on Chicago Public Schools headquarters. "We're under-resourced, over-tested, and we're fed up with the policies that are put in place by CPS officials," said Brian Stirgus, a Robeson High School junior. The test boycott, organized by Chicago Students Organizing to Save Our Schools, attacked what the group said was unnecessary testing. (DNAInfo)
CHARTER EXPANSION: CPS board members approved Wednesday the expansion of several charter networks but, in an unusual occurrence for an appointed board that usually accepts all of the administration’s recommendations, the proposals did not all earn unanimous votes. (Catalyst)
POVERTY GRANT EXPLOSION: Across Illinois, the state counted some 1 million low-income students — more than twice the federal numbers — in calculating poverty payments to districts, a Tribune review of school finance data shows. Those numbers, in turn, have prompted skyrocketing poverty grant expenditures totaling nearly $10 billion over the past decade — money that also goes to the wealthiest school districts in the state, including Arlington Heights-based District 59.
SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS: Two Harper High School students, Deonte Tanner and Brittney Knight, are winners this year of the prestigious Gates Millennium scholarship, awarded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. One thousand needy minority students are receiving the scholarship across the country this week; 54,000 applied. (WBEZ)
IN THE NATION
LANGUAGE FAILURE: More than 20,000 English-learners in California's public schools are not receiving language instruction and the state department of education is failing in its role to ensure that schools educate such students, alleges a lawsuit filed today by the American Civil Liberties Union. (Education Week)
A DROPOUT DROPS IN: Mark Wahlberg, one of the world’s most successful high school dropouts, stopped by T.C. Williams High School in Alexandria on Wednesday morning to encourage students to stay in school. The multimillionaire Hollywood producer, actor, former rapper and model dropped out of high school in the ninth grade. But now, the 41-year-old father of four is pursuing his diploma through an online credit-recovery program. (The Washington Post)