The other shoe is about to drop in the school closing mess. Tomorrow, we should know exactly who is on the closing list and that will be a do or die moment for the Chicago Public Schools. Parents, students, and teachers have been out in force to meet the closing hearings head on. Parents have demanded to be heard and came out in great numbers, but many of those parents will probably find out that their schools have been spared. When that happens, how the react will make all the difference. If they retreat home and breath a sigh of relief, they will be picked off themselves in a year or two. However, if they fight things begin to look very interesting. I hope we learn from that famous Martin Niemoller quote and don’t continue to allow ourselves to be picked off one at a time.
“Through the closing of neighborhood schools and the opening of charter schools, CPS has forged an alliance with corporations that have been allowed to greedily hijack funding that is targeted for our children. And, as a result, our children’s schools have been sabotaged. Yet, CPS has chosen to create a false narrative of “school failure” and “underutilization.”
“CPS counts three small classrooms dedicated to autistic students as regular classrooms, meaning that by downtown’s calculations, “those classrooms should have 90-something kids there. That would be impossible,” said McClellan Principal Jospeh Schoffner. And while local school leadership have appealed to CPS to take the autism program at McClellan into account, they’ve received thus far only a letter from the District saying it was “very much” taking into account the school’s concerns. About a quarter of McClellan’s student body is made up of special education students. Further worrying both parents and faculty at McClellan is that just a few years ago McClellan was a receiving school for Abbott students what that school was closed a few years back.”
“As the Chicago Public Schools system prepares to shutter more schools, a study released Monday concluded that Chicago is already awash in vacant school property for sale, with 24 shuttered CPS sites on the market plus about as many old Catholic schools for sale or lease.”
“Yet Brown hopes that by showing a consistent pattern of race-based closings across the nation, he can get the federal Department of Education to impose a moratorium on school closings or at least exert pressure against them. “They say they don’t have the power to do a moratorium at the federal level,” he said. “But you’ve inspired the culture of school closings through racist policies. You can inspire school closings. You can also inspire a different direction.”
“For all we know, they never had any documents in the first place and Brizard really was just making the stuff up as he went along. Or maybe they produced tons of reports—filled with smoking guns that say what the mayor knew and when he knew it. Maybe those reports are now sitting on Mayor Emanuel’s bed stand—you know, so he can read them every night before falling asleep.”
“Students who are struggling academically get tested even more than their classmates, because the beatings will indeed continue until the morale improves, or something to that effect. Just last week select students were pulled out of my fourth and sixth grader’s classrooms, to take, yet again, the MAP test, one of many standardized tests. All students took this particular test earlier this year and now, some students had to take it again. No one announces why these kids are being pulled out to retake this test, but the entire class knows why. They certainly aren’t getting pulled out to go to Disneyland. May as well shine a big follow spot on them as they leave the room “this kid did not score well in reading or math.” It’s humiliating for the students, but CPS will get their tests scores and isn’t that what is really important here, the scores?”