The 2011 CPS Budget in a Nutshell

On Monday several Raise Your Hand members met with CPS Chief Financial Officer Diana Ferguson and Budget Director Christina Herzog to learn about CPS' proposed Fiscal Year 2011 budget. Drew Beres (Ron Huberman's Assistant) was also in the meeting. Attached is a copy of the presentation they gave us (excellent overview and suggested reading), and the full CPS budget book can be downloaded athttp://cps.edu/About_CPS/Financial_information/Pages/FYBudget2011.aspx. Continue reading

CPS Draft Guidelines for School Closings

CPS has released draft guidelines for school closings. They are having two community hearings and will receive comments on the draft guidelines through 11/21/11. They plan to release their list of school closings on 12/1/11. Continue reading

Next CPS Task Force Meeting: This Tuesday 9/1

CPS is holding the second longer day task force meeting this Tuesday. Please continue to share your thoughts on this issue with us. We will be attending these meetings throughout the year with the goal of bringing back input from our members on how the day should be shaped for next fall. Share your thoughts, concerns, views on this topic here. What do you want to see more of and less of at your child's school for next year? What is missing in the current day?

Call to Action from Healthy Schools Campaign on Physical Education Waiver Policy at CPS

This is an important campaign. For years, CPS has been signing a waiver to get out of the state's required minutes for physical education for our children. Mr. Brizard is reviewing this policy right now and HSC has created a very easy way to contact CPS to let them know you value physical education and think it's beneficial to your child's learning. Check it out here: http://www.healthyschoolscampaign.org/getinvolved/action/pe-waivers.php

RYH in Sun Times 10/14: City Needs Real Debate on How to use Longer School Day

For months we’ve heard Mayor Rahm Emanuel compare our public schools with those in Houston, expressing outrage that kids in Chicago have spent three to four fewer years in school by the time they graduate. Continue reading

Tuesday, 9/27 Meeting on the Longer Day at Coonley Elementary

Interested in the longer day issue? This is an opportunity to get an update about our participation  in the CPS Longer Day Task Force. Come meet other  parents from many different schools and share your opinions and concerns about extending the day at CPS. Hear from Alderman Ameya Pawar on his plan to invest money  into the schools in his ward. Follow up with a cocktail summit at Gannon's Pub. Location: Coonley Elementary 4046 N. Leavitt Date: Tuesday, 9/27 Time: 6:30pm Guest Speaker: Alderman Ameya Pawar

Summary of Fall Membership Meeting at Coonley

As many of you know, Raise Your Hand hosted a meeting on Tuesday, September 27th at Coonley School to discuss the issue of extending the CPS school day.  Approximately 130 audience members – primarily  parents and teachers, heard from Raise Your Hand members as well as comments from Alderman Ameya Pawar (47thWard) and representatives from CPS and the CTU.  During the meeting, RYH shared the results of its informal survey focused on extending length of the CPS school day. As of last week, 68% of respondents were receptive to a longer day but 83% preferred a day that did not exceed 7 hours. Qualitative comments reflected that respondents felt quality trumped quantity in terms of how the day is spent. Continue reading

What's the deal with CPS and the extended day?

There’s been a lot of talk in the media of late about extending the day at CPS, and a lot of confusion amongst parents on the when, what and how of this endeavor.  Although currently these questions remain unanswered, CPS has assembled a task force to flesh out the details. We are very pleased to be included on this task force to help shape how the day will be lengthened for next school year, 2012/2013, with Patricia O’Keefe of RYH representing our group. Continue reading

Update on Longer Day Task Force: Take Our Quick Survey Now

There is currently a lot of talk and public focus on a longer school day.  Five schools agreed to move to a 7.5 hour student day in the past week. RYH attended the first Longer School Day Advisory Committee meeting on September 6th.  Below are some key points from the meeting. Continue reading

The Day is Getting Longer for 3 CPS Schools This Year

There’s a lot of buzz about the latest move by CPS to offer 3 CPS schools  (Skinner North, STEM and Melody) $150k/$75k and a 2% bonus to teachers for moving to a 7.5 hour school day. Most of our schools are 5hours45 minutes so that’s an increase of 105 minutes for some schools. What do you think? We are interested to hear from our members on this.  What are your thoughts and concerns? Is this a OSFA (one size doesn’t fit all) issue in terms of the right amount of the extension of the day for our schools? Or, is there a certain length of time that would work for all of our schools? Continue reading