This Week in Ed 7.8.20: What will IL schools look like in the Fall? | Bi-weekly Chats with CPS OLSCR | SRO Updates

New! LSC Bi-weekly Chats with OLSCR Assistant Director Myra Winding

TOMORROW, Th, July 9, 4-5PM, via Google Meets

Agenda | Registration form (you need to register by 3PM, Th, July 9)

Local School Council (LSC) Facilitators should have shared the agenda with each of the LSCs they support, inviting them to join. There will be a dial-in number that will be given to registered participants. OLSCR = The Office of Local School Council Relations

So why is this happening? LSC members from our LSC Solidarity Zoom calls wrote a letter to CPS and city leadership asking for public accountability and consistent communication from the District moving forward. Over 100 stakeholders signed on demanding decision makers report progress on equity gaps to the parents and community members in a forum where folks would be able to ask questions directly to district leaders. The expectation is that LSC members, parents and primary school stakeholders will receive current information, transparency and participation in decision-making. Share the LSC Bi-weekly Chats info with your fellow LSC members, parents, and stakeholders. All are highly encouraged to participate and attend! 


#PoliceFreeSchools Updates

Last night…

Last Thursday…

10AM: There was a City Council joint committee hearing of the Education and Public Safety Committees. It was a subject matter hearing on the City IG report on SROs which was published in 2018 (there was also a follow up IG report published in June 2019; neither of these damning IG reports had a City Council hearing until now.) Press coverage:

12:30PM: Youth hosted their own virtual hearing in the early afternoon. The #PoliceFreeSchools youth did not participate in the joint committee hearing because they were, essentially, shut out. They had lined up their expert witnesses for testimony but were told they could participate in the lottery for public comments. At their hearing, youth spoke and their experts, Professor David Stovall and Amy Meeks, lawyer with the Chicago Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights, testified. Press coverage: 

Further reading (or watching) for your consideration...


What will IL schools look like in the fall?

We don’t know yet. The IL State Board of Education (ISBE) posted guidelines for IL districts on June 23. They’ve also posted a FAQ doc for these guidelines plus an update on the use of face shields- both of these docs posted on June 30. 

We’ve created this RYH webpage, Summer 2020: COVID-19 Resources, which we update with links as more information becomes available for IL and Chicago. Currently, individual school districts are creating their plans so we encourage you to actively look out for communications from your district and school. 

CPS shared this student survey and this parent survey - both of these came via email & both are still open. In June, CEO Jackson said the district will have their guidance soon, then schools will determine their plans based on the district guidance- and somehow LSCs will be involved. We have no details on how this will work.

Forbes: Want Schools Open In The Fall? Then Pay For It

Science: School openings across globe suggest ways to keep coronavirus at bay, despite outbreaks


CPS Summer Meals

We've created a webpage here where we tried to put all the info in one place.


Special Education News

Excluded by Choice: Urban Students with Disabilities in the Education Marketplace is written by friend of RYH and Associate Professor of Special Education, Dr. Federico Waitoller. Excluded by Choice is written for a general audience and is situated in the city of Chicago. It follows the story of 24 parents of students with disabilities and their experience with school choice. The book has a shout out to RYH in the acknowledgment section and cites various reports from RYH. Waitoller thinks you will find some of the stories painfully familiar. From UIC’s Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy (IRRPP):

Through powerful narratives of parents of Black and Latinx students with disabilities, this book provides a unique look at the relationship between disability, race, urban space, and market-driven educational policies. Offering significant insights into complex forms of educational exclusion, the text illustrates the actual challenges and paradoxes of school choice faced by today’s parents. Included are explanations for the kinds of injustices students with disabilities face every day, as well as resources that can be helpful for engaging in collective action aimed at improving educational services for all children.

Find out more and purchase the book here.



CPS ARA Meetings

There are still 2 meetings: one tonight, Wed, July 8, and one tomorrow, Th, July 9. Both start at 5PM. Here's what you need to know:


Attention: Teachers! 

  • Teacher survey

Teachers across the nation, please consider taking this survey on how teachers are addressing student wellness during COVID-19 and intensified resistance to racial injustice. Twitter thread here for context & questions.

  • A message from BooksFirst!

BooksFirst is in need of new recipient schools to add to the fall schedule. 

BooksFirst! will come back from our COVID hiatus in the fall when schools reopen. Unfortunately, we have lost some Transport Volunteers due to understandable concerns. So, out of necessity, we are going to have our recipient schools pick up books from our three drop off locations (Jefferson Park, North Center and Edgewater.)

If your school is in need of books AND you are able & willing to pick them up from the above locations, please call BooksFirst! at 773-472-3709 or email them at



In Other News

NPR: States Sue Education Department Over Allocation Of Pandemic Funds To Schools

WBEZ: New Teachers Prep For First Jobs During The Pandemic 

WTTW: Teaching LGBTQ History: New Law Calls for Curriculum Inclusion

Chalkbeat Chicago: Chicago launches “groundbreaking” initiative to connect up to 100,000 students to the internet