Today is report card pickup day for us, which is why I have the odd timing with my blog posting. I really dislike report card day not because of what it is, but because of what it could be. I usually get along well with my students’ parents. They know I have their child’s best interests at heart. However, our report card day is a cattle call where, if every student’s parents want to speak with me, I can give them about 2 minutes and 12 seconds of time. I can, of course, schedule a future meeting when I have more time, but now that CPS has eliminated that half hour in the morning we used to have, it has to be on my own time. I still do it, but I resent it. I don’t mind giving up hours of time for my students, but I will never enjoy my employer telling me I have to give up even minutes, if that makes any sense. I wish we could do this with a schedule the way most suburbs do and I wish we didn’t have it on Wednesday night in the middle of the week.
Everybody seems to be getting hot and bothered over CTU’s announcement that it will be stepping up its political efforts. They will be attempting to register 100,000 new voters, which is a new thing, but certainly not a major announcement in a Democracy. They will be vetting candidates, but they already do that. Finally, they said that they would be increasing donations to their PAC. They’ve been talking about that forever. Teachers pay like $20 a year and with our pension under attack every other week in Springfield, it’s worth it for that alone. If there is any threat to our democracy in Chicago, it’s not from teachers registering more Chicagoans to vote, it’s from Rahm accepting more and more money from interests outside our city.
“The union says Guggenheim was neglected, with overcrowded classrooms and just two working computers in the library. Advocates say once the proposal to shut down the school was announced, the principal improperly tried to push homeless children to transfer. Once Guggenheim was closed, only 37 percent of students went to the designated CPS receiving school. Catalyst-Chicago has reported that CPS has lost track of 23 Guggenheim kids, and cannot say where they ended up.”
“Like young, ignorant newcomers to a city that has a history of rough and tumble politics they can only see millions of dollars in Rahm’s bank account and think that makes him invincible.”
“Chicago is holding more than 190 community meetings and public hearings this spring—all required by law—to gather feedback on its proposal to close an unprecedented 54 schools. The district also has proposed six school turnarounds (complete re-staffings that also turn the school over to the private nonprofit manager Academy for Urban School Leadership), and 11 “co-locations” where 23 schools would share space in 11 buildings.”
“He told the audience at the chamber’s “Upgrade America” event (focusing on improving the quality of the labor force through education) that he did not want to see a repeat of when the business community went silent after the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act and states responded by “dummying down” their standards. “I don’t understand why the business community is so passive when these kinds of things happen,” he said.