Notes from West Side CPS Community Engagement Forum

This is a summary from a RYH Board Member Dwayne Truss who attended the westside forum on Sat 10/27. CPS has had four community engagement forums by invite only. CPS is collecting feedback to shape their 10 year faciliites plan and also school action plan. Continue reading

10/25: West Garfield Park Townhall Meeting on the Longer Day

Raise Your Hand is partnering with the Progressive Action Coalition for Education to host a Town Hall Meeting on the Extended School Day on Tuesday, 10/25 in West Garfield Park. Come out and voice your opinions/concerns on this important topic. There will also be a representative from CPS and the CTU on the panel to answer questions. We hope to see you there. Please share this info with your schools (There is a pdf of a flyer attached to this page). Date: Tuesday, October 25, 2011 Place: Bethel Lutheran Church Address:  130 N. Keeler, Chicago, IL 60524 Time: 6:30-8:30pm Other Partners: The Lawndale Alliance, The Black Star Project, Austintalks.org

Recap of SW Side 10/23 CPS Community Engagement Forum

Thanks to CPS parent Jennie Biggs for attending this meeting and taking these detailed notes. This was a by-invite only meeting and many parents have asked for transparency about what is happening at these meetings, of which CPS says feedback will be considered for 10 year-planning and decisions about school actions. RYH attended a N/NW side meeting 10/24 and also a South-side meeting 10/25. More info to come. Continue reading

Letter to Barbara Byrd-Bennett

We would like to introduce our group, Raise Your Hand, to you today. We are a coalition of parents across the district who have been advocating for better funding, programs and a stronger parent and community voice in policy making at CPS since 2010. Our group formed to tackle the never-ending issue of state and local cuts to the education budget. Continue reading

CPS Parent Workshop/Training Opportunities

This is from CPS: There are workshop/trainings being offered by our FACE Network Collaboratives. October 27, West Side Collaborative Parent Conference, Arturo Velazquez Tech. Institute, 8:30am-1pm November 3, North/Northwest Side Collaborative Parent Conference (invitations next week) Continue reading

Raise Your Hand: Where Have we Been, Where are we Going?

What is Raise Your Hand? A solution-oriented grassroots parent-led advocacy group that works on improving public education for all kids.   Who We Are RYH was founded by a non-funded group of parents in April 2010 to fight the $1.3 billion budget cuts to education that were expected to raise class sizes to 37 students at CPS and result in a loss of many other programs. Many parents from different schools joined forces at this time to fight these cuts. and raise awareness about the funding issues at CPS. RYH formed out of sheer frustration at yearly budget cuts, perpetual instability, lack of communication and inequitable funding. Continue reading

Brizard out after 17 months, new CPS CEO is Barbara Byrd-Bennett

News broke Thursday that JC Brizard, the CEO for CPS from April 2011 to present, resigned from his position. He is reportedly leaving on “mutually agreeable terms” with CPS after much speculation in the press. This is the 5th turn-over of this position in 4 years. We wish Mr. Brizard the best in his future endeavors and congratulate Ms. Byrd-Bennett on her new position. We hope to meet with her at some point to discuss the issues that remain most pressing to parents in our membership. Continue reading

On School Choice

There seems to be some confusion about our position on school choice. Last week we had an opinion piece in Catalyst about the role of DFER (Democrats for Education Reform) in Chicago education reform and Catalyst then invited the Director of DFER to respond to our piece. She responded that “my hope is that Ms. Katten wouldn’t discount non-neighborhood school parents and claim that they aren’t real.”Thisresponse reflects an unawareness about RYH and its membership. Continue reading

Elected School Board Referendum on Ballot in 327 Precincts Nov 6th

To see if the referendum is on the ballot in your precinct, check out the link below. Plug in your address and name and then click on"Sample Ballot." Scroll down to see if there is a "Public Question." on the ballot with the referendum. Continue reading

The Weekly Update

Greetings All, there is a lot going on in the ed world this Fall!   Teachers Ratify Contract 79% of teachers who cast ballots voted to approve the 3 year contract Tuesday. The Board also needs to vote to approve. Continue reading