Weekend Reading 8/27/2016


Weekend Reading: An Education News Service from the Chicago Principals and Administrators Association

The President’s Picks: The Top Five Reads of the Week

“Time to End the War on Neighborhood High Schools”

On Friday, Beatriz Ponce de Leon, Executive Director of Generation All, penned a remarkable opinion article in Crain’s Chicago Business calling for CPS to do “everything possible to make neighborhood public high schools great for all students.”  CPAA is partnering with Generation All on a principal-led effort to change the School Quality Ratings Policy (SQRP) to make it fair for all schools. In short, the ratings policy should fairly reflect the quality of the academic programs in our schools rather than punishing schools based on the socioeconomic background of the students and families we serve. 


2. Chicago Magazine’s 2016 Best Public Schools

Chicago Magazine has released its rankings of the Chicago area’s best schools, and a series of articles explaining the criteria used to determine the rankings and other related topics.


3. John Oliver Puts National Spotlight on Charter School Corruption

This week John Oliver used his weekly news satire program, Last Week Tonight, to highlight the rampant abuse, fraud and corruption in the charter school industry.  

The Episode

Related Reading


4. CPS Continues to Squander Hundreds of Millions While Claiming Poverty

Despite debt and dozens half-empty high schools, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and district leaders are contemplating building three new high schools and other unnecessary projects in the coming years, and adding billions to the district’s debt in the process.  CPS’s budget is being criticized by a wide array of advocacy groups, from the conservative leaning Civic Federation to the Chicago Teachers Union and disability rights groups.

CPS Waste

Reckless Borrowing



CPS Budget Criticized


5. African Americans Disproportionately Targeted by Chicago Police for Marijuana Enforcement

Despite the fact that academic studies have found marijuana usage is similar across racial and ethnic boundaries, African-American neighborhoods continue to bear the brunt of enforcement. • Largely black East Garfield Park on the West Side has the highest rate of arrests and ticketing — 72 times greater than in predominantly white Edison Park, which ranks lowest.


President’s Honorable Mentions

You Can’t Solve a Murder if You Can’t Investigate it.

The murder clearance rate is a measurement of solved and closed murder cases. Over the past 10 years Chicago has consistently had one of the lowest clearance rates of any of the country’s 10 biggest cities. A strong factor is our low clearance rate is our shrinking detective force.  By understaffing its detective force, Chicago officials have made the decision to leave let more and more murders go unsolved. Leaving murderers on the street increases the likelihood of subsequent murders.


Chicago Area Teacher Makes Viral Back-to-School Video






Holistic Educational Accountability

From lead paint exposure and access to nutritional food options, to household income and persistent segregation, the causes of low academic attainment reach far beyond schools.  Educators have always been willing to do their part, but the rest of society has been slow to do theirs.  This section covers the non-school factors that impact educational attainment.

Segregation’s Impact on Chicago’s Schools


Teaching and Learning


International Comparative Education


Charter School/Privatization Watchdog Report

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