The coming year:
“There are three key challenges they’re going to face: Springfield, and the [state’s] … totally unacceptable budget; the implementation of these national education reforms, [implementing them] in a way that … doesn’t bust the school district’s budget; and [CTU] contract negotiations.”
former CEO, Chicago Public Schools
“This next year isn’t going to be a picnic.”
Chicago Principals and Administrators Association
“You still have the old mentality, the old guard, nestling in the ranks. And they make life pretty miserable for people trying to innovate or do new things in schools. Even when the new leadership commits itself to something, … things are still boxed up in the bureaucracy there.”
Mike Klonsky, director
Small Schools Workshop
Initiatives undertaken by the Duncan/Scott/Eason-Watkins administration
Reading initiative: Extra time and support for reading, including board-funded reading specialists at 114 low-performing schools.
Small schools: Bowen, Orr and South Shore will lead the way in creating more “multiplexes” with several independent schools inside. Foundations chip in $18 million over five years, with the goal of creating 15 to 20 small schools out of five existing large high schools.
Human capital initiative: Reforms aimed at strengthening the CPS workforce may include new hiring practices, new evaluation criteria for principals, and new “leadership” career tracks for teachers.
Desegregation review: Evaluation of 20-year old court-monitored desegregation plan.
Professional development audit: Inventory and evaluation of board-funded training for teachers.
üNew report cards: Expansion of information provided on each school, intended to create a more accurate picture of performance.
Re-tooling accountability: Intervention ramped down, external partners evaluated, with an eye toward streamlining and aligning efforts to improve instruction.
Re-organizing regional services: Could break regions into smaller units in effort to help them work more closely with schools on instruction.
Key stats 2001-02
600 Schools: 492 elementary schools, 93 high schools, 15 charter schools
437,618 students: 51.3% African-American, 35.8% Latino, 9.5% White, 3.2% Asian, 0.2% Native American
8,161 Central office/regional office/citywide staff
Operating budget: $3.575 billion