Action alert: Feds making decisions on important testing policies

As we mentioned in a recent email blast, Congress is discussing a rewrite of the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB), now known as the Elementary and Secondary Education ACT (ESEA).

Why is this important? Despite what may have been good intentions, NCLB/ESEA has led to the overuse and misuse of testing that we see in CPS and around our country, narrowing of curriculum and a punitive instead of supportive culture in many of our schools.

What can you do?

Action Alert: call your US Senator/Congressperson

As we mentioned last week, No Child Left Behind (the current version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act or ESEA) is in the process of being rewritten. This is the law that requires annual yearly testing for every student in 3-8 that has been the catalyst for so much of the overuse and misuse of standardized testing in our schools. There is a US Senate hearing coming up on 1/21, and we need parents to call their US senators and representatives ASAP! 

Education questions to ask at Aldermanic Forums

There are so many new candidates runnning for alderman and we hope that you get out to some forums in your area and ask the important questions on public education! We put together a list of possible questions. Email us if you have other ideas:

Education Related Questions

Our Ward’s Public Schools

What are the public schools in the our Ward? What are the needs of those schools?

What is a Local School Council or LSC?

Statement to the Illinois State Board of Education on 11/21/14

Statement to the Illinois Board of Education: 11/21/2014 at their budget hearing

We appreciate that this board has recommended that 100% of the foundation level for General State Aid be funded, even though year after year the General Assembly has not done so.  We are opposed to SB16 in it’s current form because it doesn’t address adequacy of funding, and ends up harming many districts in the middle who have not had adequate funding for years. These districts will be in a same place that some of our poorest districts are in just a few years.

Support RYH - Make a donation today

November 12, 2014

Dear RYH Subscriber,

We know you are someone who cares deeply about quality public education for all, that’s why we are contacting you today.  We need your help!

To continue connecting parents citywide to advocate for thriving neighborhood schools and policies that put children first, Raise Your Hand needs your financial support. We count on people like you to help fund our modest budget.

Response to ISBE's misinformation regarding PARCC and opt-out

Statement from More than a Score (RYH is a member)

Recently, the Superintendent of the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) distributed inaccurate information about a student’s ability to opt-out of state tests. In the “Weekly Message” dated 10/28/2014 from Chris Koch on the ISBE website it is stated that  “students may not opt out of the PARCC assessment,” and that “a district that allows students to opt out of the state’s required test would directly violate both federal and state law.”

Raise Your Hand's High-Quality Education Series: What is High-Quality Assessment and How Do We Get There?


Tue, 11/18/2014 - 6:30pm to 8:30pm


Blue 1647
1647 S. Blue Island
Chicago, IL
United States

Raise Your Hand's High-Quality Education Series:

What is High-Quality Assessment and How Do We Get There?

Panelists include:

James Pellegrino, Distinguished Professor of Education, University of Illinois at Chicago

Elizabeth A. Skinner, Associate Professor of Bilingual/Bicultural Education, Illinois State University

Cecily Relucio Hensler, Co-Director of the Chicago Grassroots Curriculum Taskforce


Blue 1647
1647 S. Blue Island
Chicago, IL
United States

CPS Seeking Feedback on Draft Guidelines for School Actions – Raise Your Hand Response

The co-location and boundary criteria in the Draft Guidelines for School Actions for the 2014-15 school year are inadequate. First, the CPS Space Utilization Standards are the sole basis for determining a facility’s enrollment capacity.

Clean Schools Survey results shared with BOE on 9/24/14

On September 16, Raise Your Hand sent out a survey on custodians and school cleanliness after hearing so many complaints from CPS parents. 162 people at 60 schools took the survey.

Does your school have fewer custodians than last year?

79.61% Yes

9.21% No

13.82% Don’t Know

How many custodians were cut this year?

6.52 % lost no custodians.

23.91% lost 1 custodian.

33.70% lost 2 custodians.

15.22% lost 3 custodians.

9.78% lost 4 custodians.


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