RYH releases data on Class Size: 76% of CPS schools had classrooms over limits in 2011

This press release was sent out today and a chart with all CPS elementary schools detailing class size info was given to the Board of Ed. Note below that RYH is setting up a class-size hotline for parents to help advocate in situatinos where classrooms are above the recommended limits of 28 for K-3 and 31 for 4-8. Also note that a parent LSC rep should now be appointed to a class size committee when a school makes a complaint about class size to CPS. 


Chicago Voters Overwhelmingly Support an Elected School Board

Yesterday, voters in 327 precincts throughout 35 wards of the city had the opportunity to vote on the referendum question regarding whether Chicago should have an elected school board, as opposed to the current mayoral appointed school board. 

Voters overwhelmingly voted yes to an elected school board, with 86.6% voting yes. The final tally amounted to 65,763 people voting YES and 10,174 voting NO.

You can view results here: http://www.chicagoelections.com/

CPS Fuzzy Math?

On the CPS School Action guidelines, released Oct. 31, 2012, submitted by Raise Your Hand board member and Austin neighborhood community leader, Dwayne Truss 

The Chicago Public Schools (CPS) just released draft guidelines for "School Actions" as required by state law.  

After reviewing, I have to take exception to the claim that the CPS community engagement process resulted in adding the space utilization criteria.

CPS poorly attempted a facade of community engagement in the drafting of the 2012 "School Actions Guidelines" by providing a confusing online survey for the public to comment on the 2011 guidelines, and organizing orchestrated "private" community roundtable meetings in which select participants were only given 24 to 48 hour notices of the meetings.

During our roundtable meeting at Malcolm X College, the participants were unanimous against using space utilization as a criteria for school actions. CPS has been touting under-utilization since the teachers strike was resolved. The CPS utilization formula was not presented and not discussed. There was no opportunity to discuss utilization and alternative uses of school buildings.

CPS Releases Draft School Action Guidelines

You can read about it here:


We did attend the most recent Chicago Facilities Education Task Force Meeting. According to the task force, many of their recommendations were not taken to create these guidelines.



Notes from the South-Side Community Engagement Forum at Kennedy-King College

Thanks to parent Joy Clendenning for taking these notes and sharing them with us!

CPS Community Engagement Forum

Oct. 25, 2012

Kennedy-King College

Notes (not a formal report) by Joy Clendenning, Oct. 29, 2012

I did not take notes on everything and there may be things I misunderstood.

Letter to Barbara Byrd-Bennett

Dear Ms. Byrd-Bennett,

We would like to introduce our group, Raise Your Hand, to you today. We are a coalition of parents across the district who have been advocating for better funding, programs and a stronger parent and community voice in policy making at CPS since 2010. Our group formed to tackle the never-ending issue of state and local cuts to the education budget.


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