Special Education Info: Lots of Changes this Year- Things to Look Out For, Fall 2016

A group of parents with children in special education have compiled this list for fellow parents:

1. We are hearing that some students in early childhood ed who receive busing or paraprofessional support are losing services in IEP revisions. Parents can fight this, but it's important that they do so within 10 days of the IEP meeting.

What can you do? Email us for more info on this: info@ilraiseyourhand.org and we can connect you to a resource to help.

CPS School Budgets Still A Concern- Here's an infographic to learn more!

We are thrilled to announce a new 501c4 organization to advocate for better education policy at the city and state level: Raise Your Hand Action!

RYH Action will build on the six plus years of education, research and outreach work accomplished by IL Raise Your Hand.

Learn more about this new venture on their website.

RYH Statements at CPS FY17 Budget Hearings

Budget hearings were sparsely attended this year, with the operating budget hearings held downtown during daytime hours instead of in the community in the evening, as done in past years.

RYH spoke at all 3 hearings. Here are the testimonies:

Wendy Katten, Raise Your Hand Director, at the CPS FY17 Operational Budget Hearing, August 19, 2016

My name is Wendy Katten and I’m speaking on behalf of RYH for IL Public Education.

CPS Budget Hearings This Week

There are a number of CPS budget hearings this week with capital budget hearings at 3 schools Wednesday evening and operating budget hearings at CPS headquarters on Friday during the day. The operating budget hearings have been in the community after work hours in the past but this year, the Sun-Times reports that "CPS defended the Friday daytime budget hearings, saying that they accommodate the schedules and availability of board members “to ensure a robust community input ahead of the Board vote later this month.”

Statement on FY2017 CPS Budget

Despite CPS claiming that they have made no cuts to the classroom, district schools have been cut by $179 million. The FY2017 budget adds to the pain that chronic underfunding of Chicago’s school system has inflicted. The need for long-term sustainable revenue to fund Chicago and all public schools in Illinois equitably and adequately is more acute than ever.

District schools cannot repeatedly be asked to do more with less. More families will leave Chicago and CPS if these cuts continue. This is no way to run a city’s educational system.

CPS cuts 508 teachers 521 support staff after claiming "no cuts to classroom"

Unfortunately, 345 schools lost a position this week and 148 schools lost 3 or more positions. Neighborhood high schools were hit especially hard again losing a net 8% of their budgets following three years of losing between 10-12% of their budgets. This is not only due to people leaving the city but due to the district opening so many new schools in areas of declining enrollment over the past 4 years, diluting resources greatly.


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