Below is the prepared statement of Joy Clendenning, CPS Parent, LSC Member, and RYH Managing Director. You can watch video of her statement here.
Joy Clendenning, RYH Managing Director and CPS Mom
Joy Clendenning for Raise Your Hand. Good morning.
First, we’d like to point out that in a district of this size the school board really needs to have a public meeting every month -- you shouldn’t combine the November and December meetings.
We’re also wondering about the legally mandated Educational Facilities Master Plan and community engagement around that, but regarding the ARA, a few comments:
Instead of having schools compete for programmatic investments, work to develop an equitable plan to support all schools, especially the neighborhood institutions facing under-enrollment.
Do something about student-based-budgeting -- this SBB experiment has gone on long enough and is no way to fund schools.
The CPS tool used to rate schools, the School Quality Rating Policy, SQRP, is too narrow and should not be used to talk about school quality. The state has a new school rating system; CPS is not required to have its own rating system; use this as an opportunity to get rid of the SQRP, and engage with public school parents, students, teachers and admin to come up with a way to rate schools which is broader and actually meaningful.
In the ARA so much of the data, this “common set of facts” is generated using the SQRP. There is much in the ARA about “quality” seats and “quality” schools -- quality defined by the SQRP. The SQRP does not tell parents enough about what’s actually happening at a school. A school's level is mostly determined by standardized test scores and attendance. There’s so much more that matters in determining the quality of a school.
The data provided in the ARA does not constitute a comprehensive foundation for allocating resources or making high-stakes decisions about schools. And now we are experiencing a new initiative in which CPS is inviting schools to submit proposals for programmatic investments such as IB, fine and performing arts, and STEM. The inherent lack of equity in asking under resourced schools to put these applications in, is ludicrous.
Making schools compete for resources and specialized programs reinforces a system of haves and have nots. It gives up up on the "what makes a great school" conversation. This has got to stop.
No more CPS hunger games. End Student Based Budgeting. Disrupt the SQRP. Instead, fight for equity and support ALL our schools.
We also take issue with the data on “empty seats” given the flawed space utilization formula that CPS uses to calculate space utilization. When will we stop talking about underutilized schools and instead talk about under-enrollment and the supports communities need for their under- enrolled schools?
Do something about the SQRP and the damage it is doing!
Stop this competition for dollars that is pitting neighborhood schools against each other!
Do something about Student Based Budgeting (SBB) and distribute the limited funds that exist, equitably.
This marketing/competition approach is totally inappropriate in a public school system.
#NoMoreCPSHungerGames #EndSBB #DisruptSQRP #Equity #SupportOurSchools