Month: December 2015

Is There A Double Standard in CTU Contract Negotiations?

Yesterday the Chicago Teachers Union roundly rejected a contract offer from the Chicago Public Schools.  The offer was described by CPS CEO Forrest Claypool as containing “a short-term sacrifice” in return for overall pay increases and other concessions.  The CTU said that Claypool’s “short-term sacrifice” would amount to “long-term pain” for the teachers they represent. I’m not sure the district…

Why Aren’t Education Reform Leaders in Chicago Stepping Up?

Here’s a fact: education reform (school choice, teacher accountability, high expectations and school autonomy) is the not the cause of the impending teacher strike in Chicago. Here’s another fact: it is becoming increasingly difficult for the public to perceive that the first fact is true. That’s because there is a sad juxtaposition playing out in Chicago today. On one hand,…

Student Voice Is Essential for School Improvement

I’ve written before at some of the good things happening at Namaste Charter School. But today I’ll be writing about some of the challenges my child’s school is currently facing. We’re in a leadership transition, which is always a tough time for any school. In summer 2014, Namaste’s founding principal made way for a successor. The transition was thoughtfully planned,…

In Spite of Change CPS is Still Failing Special Education Students in Englewood

Last week Chicago Public Schools announced that they were reversing their decision to cut Special Education positions at about 120 schools.  The Board of Education realized that somebody on staff made a mistake.  They made a recommendation based on errant and incomplete information that ultimately would have hurt untold numbers of students with special needs. While some folks will take…