Chicago: Dozens of Chicago Public Schools to Close - ProTeacher Community




Home Join Now Search My Favorites
Help


      Teacher News & Opinion

Chicago: Dozens of Chicago Public Schools to Close

>

Reply
 
Thread Tools
News's Avatar
News News is offline
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 246
Staff

News
 
News's Avatar
 
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 246
Staff
Chicago: Dozens of Chicago Public Schools to Close
Old 03-21-2013, 08:41 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #1

Quote:
Urban districts around the country have been forced to close large numbers of schools, but if the number in Chicago holds it would likely be the largest number of schools shut down by a city in a single year in recent history...
Read more...


News is offline   Reply With Quote

multigrade's Avatar
multigrade multigrade is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 11,757
Senior Member

multigrade
 
multigrade's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 11,757
Senior Member

Old 03-22-2013, 06:34 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #2

Well, I had to comment on there. :/
multigrade is offline   Reply With Quote
aggie'swife's Avatar
aggie'swife aggie'swife is offline
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

aggie'swife
 
aggie'swife's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

Old 03-23-2013, 11:52 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #3

From what I heard via the tv news....that the district population had decreased by 100,000. The district is trying to save money.

One lady mentioned that it would not be safe to go two blocks over to another school. Since I am not from a city, this makes little sense to me. If you live in the country, sometimes you ride the bus for an hour to get to school. Two blocks over, doesn't seem much to ask.

Now as I qualified that I am not from a city, maybe there is a very good reason. Could someone explain why it is not safe to go to a school two blocks away and why a district that is strapped for money should not consolidate?
aggie'swife is offline   Reply With Quote
thing1thing2's Avatar
thing1thing2 thing1thing2 is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 883
Senior Member

thing1thing2
 
thing1thing2's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Posts: 883
Senior Member
Safety
Old 03-23-2013, 02:40 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #4

Aggie's wife, SOMETIMES (definitely not always), some inner city school areas are territorial. When schools do not have quality before and after school programs in place, you, as a parent and a teacher run the risk of taking on that community's issues- which might involve violence, drugs, or gangs. The school in the video sounds/looks like a really good school. The parent sounds really concerned and very happy about the quality of education her child has received.

I had the opportunity to visit a P.S. school in PA several years ago to see how they'd addressed their inner city problems by providing NUMEROUS before and after school activities for their students. It was amazing how they'd turned their community around and engaged them.

Also, if students are moved to other schools class size becomes a huge problem therefore making it unsafe. While , if the reasons are true, I can see the district's motivation, I can also see a parent's concern with having to uproot their child from a great school. No one ever wants to do that. HTH.
thing1thing2 is offline   Reply With Quote
hand's Avatar
hand hand is online now
 
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 6,372
Senior Member

hand
 
hand's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 6,372
Senior Member

Old 03-23-2013, 04:07 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #5

2 blocks away can mean that you are crossing gang boundaries. Gangs are very territorial and a terrible problem in the inner city. Just going 2 blocks a different way can mean that you are passing crack houses and other dangers. Chicago has struggled to curb gang violence recently and there have been many killings of innocent kids going to and from school and activities. Increasing class sizes is not a solution. Looks like Rahm Emmanuel is out to destroy the schools. Of course, his children go to elite private schools. Can't see how closing that huge number of schools will improve education.



Last edited by hand; 03-23-2013 at 04:08 PM.. Reason: Spelling
hand is online now   Reply With Quote
whatever's Avatar
whatever whatever is offline
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 3,356
Senior Member

whatever
 
whatever's Avatar
 
Joined: Jul 2007
Posts: 3,356
Senior Member
It seems like several years ago, Kansas City
Old 03-23-2013, 04:14 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #6

closed about 70+ schools. Later it was revealed that attendance had dropped dramatically in the preceding years and some of those schools were staying open for a very few students. Just the cost of heating and cooling those schools, providing teachers, janitors and admin was through the roof.

That lady interviewed did brag on her child's school and teachers but also said her daughter was getting almost a 1 on 1 education there. Unless the child is severely disabled, that is not even practical.

I can see both sides.
whatever is offline   Reply With Quote
Janylynne's Avatar
Janylynne Janylynne is offline
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,998
Senior Member

Janylynne
 
Janylynne's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2007
Posts: 1,998
Senior Member
Question...
Old 03-23-2013, 04:18 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #7

How large will the existing schools become if other schools close? Larger schools have their own issues, along with larger class sizes.

Students in Chicago DO have to worry about gang and gun violence. How is the city addressing honest concerns about the safety of the students?

Schools each have their own "cultures." Will adding new students from other areas to this mix work to the benefit of both the new students and the existing students?

I don't trust politicians from either side of the aisle on education issues. Too often, they just don't know what they are talking about. I wonder, how many experienced teachers are in policy positions? I mean teachers who taught for many, many years and have real experience.
Janylynne is offline   Reply With Quote
maryteach maryteach is offline
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 3,135
Senior Member

maryteach
 
Joined: Nov 2006
Posts: 3,135
Senior Member
Here's what's really going on
Old 03-25-2013, 04:15 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #8

in Chicago mainly, but in other cities as well:

THEY'RE TAKING THE SCHOOLS AWAY FROM THE POOR!!!!!!!!!!!!!

In a nutshell, that's what's going on. One by one, they're closing the schools for the poor and replacing them with charter schools. If you don't think Chicago is going to open a new rash of charter schools now, just stay tuned. That's exactly what's going to happen. And of course, charters don't have to, and will not, take the problem kids and you watch, we're going to have kids in a 10-15 years that we discover have never been to school. You watch.

But they're closing the schools that serve the poor, using attendance as their excuse, and I'll bet that's not even true. This is very dark and very sinister and this is just the beginning of very bad outcomes for the poor.
maryteach is offline   Reply With Quote
teacherman's Avatar
teacherman teacherman is offline
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 274
Full Member

teacherman
 
teacherman's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 274
Full Member
I teach in Chicago
Old 03-25-2013, 05:46 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #9

The 100,000 students lost fact is in dispute. That is census data and to me means 100,000 children have moved out. There are other schools besides the public schools. According to CPS' own attendance data, the loss has been only 30,000. A big number to be sure, but not nearly as bad as they make it sound. Furthermore, the district has had no qualms about opening up charter schools when they supposedly have all this extra space.

I personally think there is a need to close some schools, only because of population shifting. Some neighborhoods have far fewer children now and other neighborhoods are overcrowded. That has to be addressed. However, I just do not trust the current plan. There are too many unanswered questions. For example, why didn't they invest in these schools earlier on to keep them in good shape? Why can't they bring in other organizations to co-utilize these buildings with the schools so that they don't sit half empty.

I think this will do more harm than good. CPS will never be able to sell these buildings. There is too much vacant land in these neighborhoods that would be much cheaper to build on. They will become eyesores and further depress struggling neighborhoods.

Also, to address a previous comment. The war on drugs and gangs has resulted in many of our street gangs to be without leadership. This is resulting in fractionalization and power struggles, so individual gangs may only control a few blocks. Walking a few extra blocks to school can result in crossing into another turf.
teacherman is offline   Reply With Quote
aggie'swife's Avatar
aggie'swife aggie'swife is offline
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

aggie'swife
 
aggie'swife's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

Old 03-27-2013, 04:35 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #10

First, thank you all for providing more information. It seems as though we live on totally different planets (based on the descriptions).

If it is unsafe for children to go from one neighborhood to another, then it sounds like the neighborhood folks need to get out there and make it safe. Are the people of the neighborhoods so fractured that they can't stand together?

Crack houses? Are these buildings that are sitting empty? Is there no city ordinance that requires the building owner to take certain measures to upkeep the property? A good ordinance such as if the property is not repaired within "x" amount of months, the city claims the right to level the building. Perhaps a number of empty lots allowing more free-use areas for parks would be a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

I think the suggestion to co-utilize buildings is an excellant idea. Perhaps the city services or a YMCA or boys/girls club.... ? However, the suggestion was made for more after school run programs...exactly what are you referring to? Are these babysitting programs for children of parents who work? We have a few of those run by private companies, but the majority of students play some type of sports so they are busy finishing up extra athletics and then they have homework.

Back to the issue of the schools closing....I get the impression that all these numerous schools belong to one huge district. So they feed into how many middle schools and high schools? Seems that after a certain number of students at a high school, it is too many to provide the necessary opportunities for students to keep busy such as in athletics. Perhaps it would be better to "divide and conquer." (As in more districts so that students step up and get involved.)

From teacherman's last comment, it sounds like getting rid of gangs would be a very important first step.

Thanks for letting me share a different point of view.


aggie'swife is offline   Reply With Quote
Nunziata Nunziata is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,011
Senior Member

Nunziata
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,011
Senior Member
be prepared
Old 03-28-2013, 04:45 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #11

Be prepared for what is happening in Chicago to happen in your state and your district. I know it is happening right now in my district also. Closing public schools and putting charter schools or renewed schools in there place. Using population and poor test scores as the reasons for schools closing. None of these are substantiated facts, yet it is still happening.

I truly believe this is an attack on the public education system and teachers in particular. What better way to get rid of teachers, as we know them today, than to shut down the schools?

Chicago I stand with you. I am so glad you have a strong union and parental support. I hope you are successful and can save some of these schools, if not all of them.

As for taking a bus when living in the country and walking two blocks in the inner city, I have to agree that two blocks in an inner city is like move across state lines in many cases. I work in an inner school and around the block I've been told to be careful when I drive home because it is that bad. Poverty does seem to go hand-in-hand with crimes and especially gangs. We need to figure out how to value education again and get more people out of poverty. Closing schools is not the answer.

Thank you original poster for the article. I have passed it on to my fellow teachers. Thank you Chicago teacher for telling us your side and setting the record straight.
Nunziata is offline   Reply With Quote
teacherman's Avatar
teacherman teacherman is offline
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 274
Full Member

teacherman
 
teacherman's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 274
Full Member

Old 03-30-2013, 11:01 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #12

You are right that neighborhood people have to take back their neighborhoods, but that is easier said than done. First the proliferation of guns has led to many people living in fear. If they speak up they are afraid of being shot and killed. Furthermore, these neighborhoods are the victim of generational poverty. People are working odd jobs at odd times and aren't home to supervise their own children, let alone the neighborhood. Many agree that the violence and the gangs have to stop, but they lack the resources and the time to do anything about it.

There are ordinances about people caring for their buildings, but budget cuts, hiring freezes, and high foreclosure rates have resulted in too many buildings and too few inspectors. The city has recently stepped up the pace and has started destroying some of these buildings, but it is a long list. Also, you can't turn every vacant lot into a house. The city needs some of these spaces to be reoccupied for property taxes. That said, some lots have been converted into parks, gardens, etc.

After school programs can be a number of different things. Most are sponsored by outside organizations and relate to sports or academics. Some provide tutoring or homework support, others involve technology. The intent is to give children something to do other than wander the streets.

Your definition of district may be different then what we have in Chicago. The Chicago Public Schools is one district composed of over 600 schools. The majority of children attend an elementary school within their neighborhood. The school you go to depends on your address. The same holds true for high school. Children from several different elementary schools will feed into the same high school, but again it depends on your address. There are also magnet schools and charter schools, which don't follow the attendance boundaries. Smaller schools would probably be more beneficial to the students, but the problem is that smaller schools would require the hiring of more administrators and support staff, and the district is trying to reduce those numbers.
teacherman is offline   Reply With Quote
t-e-a-c-h-e-r's Avatar
t-e-a-c-h-e-r t-e-a-c-h-e-r is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 119
Full Member

t-e-a-c-h-e-r
 
t-e-a-c-h-e-r's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 119
Full Member
Class size equation
Old 03-30-2013, 05:41 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #13

As a Chicago teacher, I need to add a bit to the conversation.

CPS has a specific equation for figuring out how many student in a classroom qualifies as under enrolled. If a classroom has UNDER 30 students, that classroom is deemed underutilized. If this is how the majority of the classrooms in a school are and they fit the underperforming criteria, this school may be put on the list to close.

I teach 1st grade and have 28 students without an assistant. I certainly don't feel underutilized! Especially, with the 96% poverty rate and the 100% ESL rates in my room.

There is a school 2 miles from mine; it has a majority of the needier special Ed students. You would think they should have different utilization criteria than a primarily regular ed school...they don't. How are those teachers effective with classrooms that should have no fewer than 30?? This sure doesn't make any sense to an educator! But to our school board and our ridiculous mayor, it does!! And this school is on the list to close.

Being a Chicago Public School teacher is very frustrating. I appreciate hearing the support from my PT friends.

PS... I'm not sure where I heard this, but the media and the mayor keep saying CPS is running at a deficit every year. This is not true. There is actually a surplus.

Last edited by t-e-a-c-h-e-r; 03-30-2013 at 05:43 PM.. Reason: Needed to add that the school 2 miles from mine is on the list to close
t-e-a-c-h-e-r is offline   Reply With Quote
aggie'swife's Avatar
aggie'swife aggie'swife is offline
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

aggie'swife
 
aggie'swife's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

Old 03-31-2013, 10:33 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #14

Quote:
teacherman's Message:
You are right that neighborhood people have to take back their neighborhoods, but that is easier said than done. First the proliferation of guns has led to many people living in fear. If they speak up they are afraid of being shot and killed. Furthermore, these neighborhoods are the victim of generational poverty. People are working odd jobs at odd times and aren't home to supervise their own children, let alone the neighborhood. Many agree that the violence and the gangs have to stop, but they lack the resources and the time to do anything about it.
As my daddy used to say, "nothing good comes easy -- there is always a price." Are there no preachers that will lead the charge? Sounds like they need a leader like Martin Luther King or Tawakkol Karman to step up. But then maybe that is not the problem. There may be leaders, perhaps just no followers with will power to turn off the television and take risk. Sad fact that in some parts of America (probably not limited to Chicago) children can not enjoy the safety to walk from one neighborhood to another.
aggie'swife is offline   Reply With Quote
aggie'swife's Avatar
aggie'swife aggie'swife is offline
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

aggie'swife
 
aggie'swife's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2008
Posts: 618
Senior Member

Old 03-31-2013, 10:55 AM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #15

Quote:
t-e-a-c-h-e-r's Message:
As a Chicago teacher, I need to add a bit to the conversation.

CPS has a specific equation for figuring out how many student in a classroom qualifies as under enrolled. If a classroom has UNDER 30 students, that classroom is deemed underutilized. If this is how the majority of the classrooms in a school are and they fit the underperforming criteria, this school may be put on the list to close.

I teach 1st grade and have 28 students without an assistant. I certainly don't feel underutilized! Especially, with the 96% poverty rate and the 100% ESL rates in my room.
We have a state law that limits classroom size in grades K-4. The maximum is 22. They can petition the state, if it is a hardship on the district, however, they might get away with having 24 for a short time.

Quote:
There is a school 2 miles from mine; it has a majority of the needier special Ed students. You would think they should have different utilization criteria than a primarily regular ed school...they don't. How are those teachers effective with classrooms that should have no fewer than 30??
I may not be understanding you correctly, but are you meaning that spec Ed students are funneled into it's own school? So you don't have inclusion?
aggie'swife is offline   Reply With Quote
t-e-a-c-h-e-r's Avatar
t-e-a-c-h-e-r t-e-a-c-h-e-r is offline
 
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 119
Full Member

t-e-a-c-h-e-r
 
t-e-a-c-h-e-r's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2012
Posts: 119
Full Member

Old 03-31-2013, 03:20 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #16

aggie's wife~ CPS does have inclusion but some of the needier students get extra attention and services at that school. Some schools are not equipped with the most specialized teachers depending on the need. So these students are bused to this school.
t-e-a-c-h-e-r is offline   Reply With Quote
Nunziata Nunziata is offline
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,011
Senior Member

Nunziata
 
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,011
Senior Member
District
Old 04-01-2013, 06:25 PM
 
Clip to ScrapBook #17

My District has approximately 150 public schools. There are Magnet schools, Charter schools and private schools. We also have pre-schools. I believe that would make the total number of schools higher, but the District doesn't control the private schools and some of the pre-schools.

Our students are supposed to go to the school closest to their living address, but many people "amend" their address to attend the school of their choice.

Magnet schools take students from throughout the District based on GPA's.

Our class size is based on square footage and fixed #'s, but many of our classrooms have between 28 and 38 students with only one teacher.

Charter schools, private schools and per-kindergarten schools do not following address boundaries either.
Nunziata is offline   Reply With Quote

Join the conversation! Post as a guest or become a member today. New members welcome!

Reply

 

>
Teacher News & Opinion
Thread Tools




Sign Up Now

Sign Up FREE | ProTeacher Help | BusyBoard

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 05:42 AM.

Copyright © 2019 ProTeacher®
For individual use only. Do not copy, reproduce or transmit.
source: www.proteacher.net