I’ll freely admit that I’m a few days behind on the news. It’s been one of those weekends, where I didn’t want to think about CPS until the last possible moment, which for me was Sunday morning as the Super Bowl would eat into my normal Sunday evening preparations. Today’s news (such as it is) centers around Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick who goes out of his way to praise his Chicago Public School teachers. It makes me wish he showed that same passion for his own Massachusetts public schools teachers.
“Patrick lives in a mansion in Milton now. His daughter went to Milton Academy. But his tendency to mention his old Chicago teachers by name has become a bit of a joke among political reporters. There was Mrs. Eddie Quaintance, his sixth-grade teacher at Terrell Elementary, who taught her class to count in German and took them on a field trip to the Chicago Lyric Opera. There was Mrs. Threets from third grade and Mrs. Weissenberg — the first white teacher Patrick can recall — from seventh.”
“The prevalence of violence on our streets is starting to reduce the wonderful qualities that kids like Hadiya possess—qualities we all want in our children—to homicide statistics. As an educator, I empathize with the teachers for whom the aftermaths of these incidents are grave daily realities. We’re living in a society that’s completely out of kilter. Our children feel disrespected and their outsized response is violence. They’re given no methodology for learning how to cope with their anger.”
“The teachers questioned the validity of the test, Measures of Academic Progress (MAP). They also said MAP “subtracts many hours of class time from students’ schedules each year,” and clogs the school’s computer labs for weeks, making them unavailable for other educational purposes. “This especially hurts students without computers at home,” the teachers wrote.”
“The formula for heading off real community engagement during the hearings is straightfoward, and familiar to anyone who has attended a Chicago Board of Education meeting since the Emanuel administration took over in June 2011 — flood them with Power Point nonsense and then walk out when anyone talks about the real world. According to the CPS script, the hearings are supposed to consist of the Power Point presentations, followed by closed (to the media) “focus groups” which are being paid for by the Walton family (that’s the anti-union Wal-Mart family, for those not paying attention).”