Today is the last day to offer public comment to the Illinois Statre Board of Education about their proposal to lift class size limits on special education class rooms. This proposed change would impact both children in special education and general education classrooms.
Raise Your Hand, founded by parents who mobilized in response to warnings in 2010 that class sizes might be increased to resolve budget deficits, finds itself again revisiting the classroom size problem in Chicago as CPS lists 54 schools for closure by the end of this year. These school closures reflect the CPS goal to fill classrooms with 30 students, as has been pointed out in the recent Tribune article. The new CPS utilization formula allows for as many 36 students in classrooms.
After months of saying we have a space utilization crisis the narrative has shifted and the city now says the closings are all about school performance and their need to save kids who are trapped in "failing schools."
Here's one example of a school the city considers failing that is going to be shuttered, Lafayette Elementary.
The resignation of Penny Pritzker from the Chicago Board of Education creates a vacancy that will be filled through an appointment by Mayor Emanuel. Previous Emanuel appointments to the Board of Education have been made with no public discussion. In fact, the last resignation by a member was actually announced by the mayor at the same time that his replacement was named, with no opportunity for outside input.
Print it out, pass it around, flyer your neighborhood. Mass school closings are bad for kids and bad for our neighborhoods. Especially when people in charge at CPS just moved here and are not familiar with our schools, our kids, our city.
and CPS' Becky Carroll says that "big classes don't necessarily hamper learning. It's the quality of teaching in that classroom," Carroll said. "You could have a teacher that is high-quality that could take 40 kids in a class and help them succeed."
School closing critics question CPS' 'ideal' class size of 30 students