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School choice
PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
2:06pm
Fri Nov 20, 2015

Federal Grant Stirs Debate Over Charter Schools In Illinois

The debate over charters schools is heating up in Illinois. Advocates on both sides of the issue are speaking out about a five-year, $42 million federal grant Illinois won in September to support the creation of new public charter schools.

Quick Hit
by Op-Ed
3:49pm
Wed Oct 21, 2015

Op-Ed: Fruit From A Rotten Tree - The Truth About Barbara Byrd-Bennett & CPS

The following is from Jitu Brown, national director of the Journey for Justice Alliance and one of the Dyett Hunger Strikers.

As a CPS parent and long-time community organizer, I am appalled by the actions of Barbara Byrd-Bennett in stealing from Chicago's children to feather her already robust nest. What is more appalling however, is Mayor Rahm Emanuel's effort to isolate her actions as the corruption of an individual; and our acceptance of such nonsense. Corruption and discriminatory actions that disregard the voices of Black and Brown parents is central to the culture of the school privatization movement. While millions of dollars are pumped into selling the public on "school choice", nationwide corporate education interventions have failed to improve the academic outcomes in Black and Brown communities, while a laundry list of "reformers" have been caught violating the public trust.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
5:28pm
Tue Oct 20, 2015

IFT President To Chicago School Board: Reject New Charter School Proposals

Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT) President Dan Montgomery wants the Chicago Board of Education to reject new charter school proposals that are currently under consideration by the cash-strapped school district. Proposals for as many as 13 new alternative and traditional charter schools could go up for a vote at next week's Chicago school board meeting.

Montgomery addressed the issue while speaking with reporters Tuesday after his speech before the City Club of Chicago on the topic of "school choice."

"I think they should be rejected," he said of the pending Chicago charter school applications. "I think they've got to get their house in order first and make sure that ... every other school in the city is getting all the things it needs before they start talking about diverting more resources to charter schools."

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
6:50pm
Tue May 20, 2014

Report: School Closures, Charter Expansion Causing 'Catastrophic' Harm To U.S. Minority Communities

On the heels of the 60th anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s Brown v. Board of Education decision, which declared state-mandated public school segregation unconstitutional, dozens of grassroots organizations across the country say the push by education "reformers" to close and privatize schools is having a devastating and disproportionate impact on communities of color. Progress Illinois takes a look at a new report on the matter released by Journey for Justice Alliance, a national network of grassroots community groups.

PI Original
by Ellyn Fortino
6:56pm
Wed Apr 23, 2014

Rand Paul Visits Chicago To Talk Politics, Education Reform (VIDEO)

U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) was in Chicago Tuesday to discuss politics and education reform at two events in the city. Progress Illinois recaps some of the highlights from the discussions.