This Week in Ed 11.30.2018: Aldermen Grill CPS on Sex Abuse at City Council Hearing

On Wednesday, City Council's Committee on Education and Child Development finally had a hearing "to address issue of sexual abuse and safety of children in Chicago Public Schools." You can find our thread of live tweets from the 3 hour hearing here. We spoke at the hearing and you can find our prepared statement here.

Here are some things that may be of interest: CEO Jackson was not there nor was unelected CPS BOE President Frank Clark- neither appeared at the IL House and Senate joint hearing this past summer either. Staffers from the new $3M Office of Student Protections and Title IX (OSP) were present, gave a presentation explaining their roles, and answered many questions from several alderman. Their current interim chief is Douglas Henning, who moved from the CPS Law Department into this position. During our statement we stressed to CPS the need to share the presentation on the new Office of Student Protections (OSP) with CPS parents, students, and educators.

Press coverage:

Chicago Tribune: Hundreds of sexual misconduct complaints pour into new CPS Title IX office

Sun-Times: More than 600 new complaints land at CPS' new department dealing with sex abuse

Opinion pieces:

Chicago Tribune: Hey, CPS. What are you doing to keep my kids safe from sexual violence? I haven’t heard much from you.

Sun-Times: EDITORIAL: CPS and the sexual abuse scandal- where was the boss on Wednesday?


Betrayed: A Conversation with Chicago Tribune reporters who uncovered CPS sexual abuse

Please join Enlace Chicago, Parents 4 Teachers, RYH, Northside Action for Justice, and Kenwood Oakland Community Organization for a conversation with Trib reporters to learn more about their investigation and learn what has happened within CPS since the sex abuse was revealed.

Confirmed reporters: David Jackson, Investigative Reporter and Jennifer Smith Richards, Data Reporter. Moderator: George Papajohn, Associate Managing Editor for Investigation. Thursday, December 6, 7-8:30pm, Jesse White Park, 410 W Chicago Avenue. Please RSVP here!


School action announcement today. CPS Annual Regional Analysis (ARA) meetings: 6 more to go!

By law, CPS must announce any school actions (closings; consolidations; etc) by December 1st. Since Dec 1 is this Saturday, CPS will be announcing any school actions for 2019-20 TODAY. We definitely have this on our mind and wonder how these #CPSARA meetings fit into these decisions, now and in the future?

#CPSARA meetings start up again next week. This article from Chalkbeat Chicago gives details on the last 6 meetings happening in these regions: Greater Midway Area (meeting at Curie HS); North Lakefront Region (meeting at Sullivan HS); Near West Region (meeting at Phoenix Military HS); Bronzeville/South Lakefront Region (meeting at Dyett HS); Northwest Side Region (meeting at Roosevelt HS); and Central Area Region (meeting at Graham Training Center HS). You can find your region by using this tool.

We have a post on the CPS ARA meetings here which includes questions to ask and consider. We recommend reading this before attending a meeting and reading this if you are wondering what we are talking about- we include the who, what, where, when, and why of the meetings.

Here’s Chalkbeat Chicago coverage of last week’s Greater Stockyards Region meeting with some great comments made by community members about the need for teachers for ELLs and special education students and the need for counselors and social workers who can work with children suffering from trauma: South Side parents: “We’re struggling with high schools’

ICYMI… In early October, we joined with Blocks Together and Generation All to write a statement about the Annual Regional Analysis (ARA). We believe this report is based on some flawed assumptions.


3 charter proposals up for a vote at Wednesday’s unelected BOE meeting

You can find all of the details on the CPS 2018 Request for Proposal to Open a New School here. If you scroll down and click on “Applicant Overview” you can find a chart which provides some information on the 3 charter school proposals which are scheduled to be on Wednesday’s BOE agenda. None of these proposals appear in the CPS Annual Regional Analysis (ARA). Also at the BOE, a number of charter schools will be up for renewal. Please see the upcoming events below for details on the BOE meeting and instructions on how you can sign up to speak or attend.


Update on the charter commission bill

Raise Your Hand Action was in Springfield again this past week for the second part of Veto Session. Unfortunately, the bill to weaken the charter commission died in the Senate. You can read an update from RYHA here which includes a great summary of what happened from Jim Broadway.


In other news

WBEZ: Dismissed Principal Accuses CPS Of Trying To Silence Outspoken Principals

NPR Illinois: Pritzker Names Education Advisory Team

Chalkbeat Chicago: Seven questions for the cartwheeling Chicagoan named national school counselor of the year

Sun-Times: CPS principal turns his PTSD diagnosis into teachable moment at Orozco school

NPR Illinois: Higher Ed Weighs In On K-12 Teacher Standards

Chalkbeat Chicago: View from the child care trenches: ‘Those of us cleaning the poop are not making it’

Chicago Tribune: Nearly 130 Chicago Public Schools employees, including 9 teachers, ousted over background check issues

NPR Illinois: How Many Hours A Day Should Kids Be In School? How About Zero?


Upcoming events

CPS ARA Briefings (ARA = Annual Regional Analysis)

Dates & locations vary; the next one is scheduled for Th Dec 6

You can find the schedule for these meetings here and here. Here is our post about what to expect at the #CPSARA meetings, what questions to consider & ask, and more details of what we’ve learned about the process.


Unelected CPS BOE Meeting (CPS does this most years- combines the Nov & Dec monthly meetings into one meeting at the beginning of Dec. We spoke out against this practice at the Oct BOE meeting.)

Wed Dec 5, 10:30am

CPS, 42 W Madison

You must register online to speak. That registration begins on Mon Dec 3 at 10:30am.

Online registration to speak or attend is here. If you plan to attend, it is best to also register online in advance and starting Mon Dec 3 at 10:30am at the same link. We will be there so please contact us if you need assistance:

Check out our tips for signing up & surviving the process!


Betrayed: A Conversation with reporters from the Chicago Tribune who uncovered rampant sexual abuse in CPS

Th Dec 6, 7-8:30pm

Jesse White Park and Community Center

410 W. Chicago Avenue


Chalkbeat Chicago presents: Chicago: Education for All? The city’s next mayor & the future of public schools

Wed Dec 12, 5-7:30pm

Malcolm X College

1900 W Jackson Blvd


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