Edgebrook Elementary LSC Letter to BBB-and Mayor on Rejecting the draft Budget

We are sharing a letter from the Edgebrook Elementary LSC to Mayor Emanuel and CEO Byrd-Bennett explaining why they rejected the draft budget they were given. Thanks to the Edgebrook LSC for sharing this letter with us and making it available to our parent network.  Continue reading

Press Release Sent 6/17 on Budget Cuts

School-Based Budget Cuts are devastating: Parent Group RYH is tracking the numbers Continue reading

Rally to Restore Funding: Friday 6/21- 10am

CPS says cuts are not severe and are mostly staying away from the classroom. Are they looking at budgets from another school district? Did school closings actually add to the deficit? We don't know because the Board had no cost accounting when they voted to close the schools. Continue reading

Notes from a RYH Member who Attended BBB's 5 Pillars Talk at Westinghouse

There wasn't anything ground breaking or innovative in the 5 "pillars", as has been said they sounded more business/corporate like than educational.  The accountability she talked about is more than a little chilling, we really don't need more "accountability" but re-think what is already in place and make it smarter and less invasive and demoralizing to all. More freedom instead of less for teachers and administrators.  All of the things she talked about and David Vitale, will require an overhaul of CPS both in culture and tools(technology etc) that requires stable leadership which we haven't had for 5 years or so.  It will also require investment in a system that is chronically underfunded.  I'm not sure that CPS won't continue it's pattern of churning through CEO's, in which case there really isn't a hope for stability and sustainable change. Continue reading

School Budgets are Out....

Schools are finally getting their budgets and we hear they are not looking good for neighborhood schools. Magnet, SE, gifted, IB and other specialty programming has been protected so the majority of cuts seem to be hitting neighborhood schools.  You can attend an LSC meeting to find out more information. CPS has moved to a new per pupil funding system so many Principals are still trying to sort out their numbers and may not have clear information yet. Check to see when your school is having their LSC meeting on the budget and attend to learn more about how your school is impacted. Please email us and share the status of your school. We are trying to document the cuts. Info@ilraiseyourhand.org Continue reading

BBB tells everyone to move on, for parents it's not so easy

Barbara Byrd-Bennett says “It’s time to turn the page.” http://www.wbez.org/news/cps-chief-%E2%80%98it%E2%80%99s-time-turn-page%E2%80%99-107401 Continue reading

FOIA shows CPS Board Members had no financial data on savings to shutter 50 public schools

Major Findings from Freedom of Information Request (Chris Ball) Regarding School Closure Data Background: CPS never assembled data explaining how the 129 schools it originally considered for closure were determined. Continue reading

BBB tells Principals any school with "space" is a welcoming school

Attached is a letter that went to all Prinicpals yesterday (5/17/13) about the enrollment process for school closings.  In it CEO Byrd-Bennett tells Principals that any district school "with space" must take students who want to enroll from closing schools.  "CEO Byrd-Bennett has stated that students from sending schools and welcoming schools that are relocating can attend any school in the district that has capacity. Capacity is based on the grade level analysis we worked on with principals." Continue reading

Sign Our Petition: No to 36 and Mass School Closings

The Chicago Public Schools Space Utilization formula allows for 36 kids in a room as an "efficient" use of space. You can have 36 kids in every homeroom in CPS and not be considered overcrowded. Many of CPS' plans for closings will lead to overcrowding next year. We want CPS to revise their space utilization policy. Please sign and share this petition.  http://signon.org/sign/say-no-to-36-and-mass

40 Terrible Decisions on School Actions

Today we delivered a report to the Board of Education listing our concerns for 40 proposed school actions. As we stated to the Board, the omission of certain schools on this list does not mean we support their closure but as a grassroots group these were the schools we were able to visit, attend hearings for, meet with parents at, or research. We did walkthroughs at 22 schools on the closing list and attended numerous community hearings over the past few months. Continue reading