Opponents of School Closings Release Reports

February 18, 2009

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Two new reports attack the Chicago Public Schools' strategy of closing schools and starting new ones in their place.

 

One of the reports looks at ACT college entrance exams. It finds that students at Chicago's charter schools scored about the same on the tests as students from regular neighborhood high schools.

 

It also found that the charters enrolled fewer special education students.

 

The main author of that study is not a researcher—she's a former charter school teacher.

 

She and two UIC professors unveiled the reports yesterday alongside activists opposed to the closings.

 

Jitu Brown is with the Kenwood-Oakland Community Organization.

 

BROWN: CPS is making life-altering decisions using bad process and bad data.  

 

Study authors blasted the district's fast-track closings and called for greater community input in decisions about local schools.

 

In a statement, a top CPS official said that high demand at charter schools is proof that they are thriving. She said the district has an obligation to create even more school options.

  

The Chicago Board of Education is slated to vote on school closures and consolidations next week.