WBEZ | education http://www.wbez.org/tags/education Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en Student discipline and the Americans with Disabilities Act http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-29/student-discipline-and-americans-disabilities-act-112504 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/principal Eric E Castro.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The cornerstone of the ADA is to protect the civil rights of individuals with disabilities, to give them equal access to everything from public accommodations and government to employment and education. When it comes to that last one, students with disabilities are disciplined at a higher rate than other students. What&rsquo;s being done to address this disparity and what are the effects on the students? Daniel Losen, Director of the Center for Civil Rights Remedies at UCLA&rsquo;s Civil Rights Project, joins us. The center released a <a href="http://civilrightsproject.ucla.edu/resources/projects/center-for-civil-rights-remedies/school-to-prison-folder/federal-reports/are-we-closing-the-school-discipline-gap/AreWeClosingTheSchoolDisciplineGap_FINAL221.pdf">report</a> earlier this year.</p></p> Wed, 29 Jul 2015 13:20:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-29/student-discipline-and-americans-disabilities-act-112504 Chicago Teachers Union unhappy with Claypool's appointment to head of CPS http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-17/chicago-teachers-union-unhappy-claypools-appointment-head-cps <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/classroom Bryan McDonald.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/215157800&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;">Chicago Public Schools has a new top dog. Forrest Claypool is a longtime city official. He ran the Parks District in the 1990s, oversaw the CTA during Mayor Emanuel&#39;s first term, and in April, became the mayor&#39;s latest chief of staff. Now Claypool will take on what he calls the biggest challenge of his career &mdash; running the schools during a time of serious financial hardship. The district faces a $1.1 billion budget gap. So, what do teachers think about the changes at the top? We speak with Jesse Sharkey, Vice President of the Chicago Teachers Union.</span></p></p> Fri, 17 Jul 2015 12:31:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-17/chicago-teachers-union-unhappy-claypools-appointment-head-cps CPS releases budgets for schools http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/cps-releases-budgets-schools-112379 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/9549882898_9274fea9bf_z.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/214693141&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 22px;">Chicago Public Schools officials delivered bad news to principals Monday. Two-thirds of the city&rsquo;s public schools will see their budgets slashed. The cuts are driven, in large part, by declining enrollment. But are also driven by debt payments and pension obligations that are devouring the revenues that would otherwise be spent in the classroom. Joining us to sort through what schools are hardest hit is WBEZ&rsquo;s education reporter Becky Vevea.&nbsp;</span></p></p> Tue, 14 Jul 2015 12:15:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift/2015-07-14/cps-releases-budgets-schools-112379 Poverty's enduring hold on school success http://www.wbez.org/news/povertys-enduring-hold-school-success-112201 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1005312528-TefftSuccess_4.jpg" style="height: 402px; width: 620px;" title="Quiet time to study before lunch at Tefft Middle School in Streamwood. The percentage of low-income students at Tefft nearly doubled over the last decade and is now at 75 percent. The school is “beating the odds” on the WBEZ/Daily Herald Poverty-Achievement Index, scoring higher than might be expected given the percent of low-income students in the school. (The Daily Herald/Bob Chwedyk)" /></div><div class="image-insert-image ">In the rhetoric of the American Dream, an individual&rsquo;s success is earned through hard work and determination. In the rhetoric of recent school reforms, a school&rsquo;s success depends on quality teaching and high standards. Poverty shouldn&rsquo;t matter when it comes to either.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">The reality of Illinois&rsquo; education system tells a different story.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">A new analysis of a decade of state test score data by WBEZ and the <em>Daily Herald</em> underlines the immense role poverty plays in how well a school performs.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">Our analysis shows a vast expansion of poverty&mdash;2,244 schools have seen their proportion of low-income students increase by at least 10 percentage points over the last decade.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">And the number of schools struggling with concentrated poverty&mdash;where nearly every child in the school is low-income&mdash; has ballooned.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image ">But perhaps most troubling, WBEZ and the <em>Daily Herald</em> find that poverty remains a frustratingly accurate predictor of how well schools will perform. Schools full of middle-class kids rarely perform below average on state tests; schools made up of low-income kids rarely score above.</div></div><p>In fact, test score data in Illinois indicate that the degree to which poverty is tied to school performance is slightly stronger than it was a decade ago&mdash;despite reforms that have included school re-staffings, closures, consolidations, new state standards and more stringent guidelines for evaluating teachers.&nbsp;</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/elemreg.jpg" style="height: 284px; width: 620px;" title="(Tim Broderick/Daily Herald)" /></div><p><em>The graphs show that the greater the percentage of low-income students in a school, the lower the school&#39;s test scores tend to be. <a href="http://reportcards.dailyherald.com/lowincome/elem2014index.html" target="_blank">Click here</a>&nbsp;to view an interactive version of the 2014 elementary scartterplot and&nbsp;<a href="http://reportcards.dailyherald.com/lowincome/elem2004index.html" target="_blank">here</a> for the 2004 version.&nbsp;The diagonal black line is a trend line. R2 is the strength of the relationship between poverty and test scores. The graph also shows a dramatic increase in the percentage of low-income students in the state, and more schools where nearly all kids are poor. Each dot represents one school. All Illinois elementary schools with test scores are plotted.</em></p><p>The effect of poverty on school performance is well known.</p><p>But a graph of 10 years of state test score data paints a picture of near-perfect stratification. Schools with the fewest poor students score the highest on average.</p><p>Schools&rsquo; scores go consistently down from there as the proportion of low-income students in a school goes up. The pattern holds for every income level over every year for the past decade &mdash; for both elementary and high schools.</p><div style="display:block;overflow:hidden;width:620px;height:420px;"><iframe frameborder="0" height="520" scrolling="no" src="http://reportcards.dailyherald.com/lowincome/hscht.html" style="margin-top:-100px" width="620"></iframe></div><p><em>The line chart shows the percent of students meeting or exceeding standards on Illinois&rsquo; high school exam in 2014, for various income ranges. The blue line at the top of the graph represents the average performance of more affluent schools &mdash; where low-income students make up between 0 and 12.4 of enrollment. The green line at the bottom of the graph represents the average performance of the poorest schools &mdash; where between 87.5 and 100 percent of students are low-income.</em></p><p>For many, including state officials, the pattern is disturbing, even un-American.</p><p>&ldquo;As Americans, we love to think of ourselves as living in the land of opportunity &mdash; a country where anyone who works hard can make it,&rdquo; says Natasha Ushomirsky, a data and policy analyst at the Education Trust, a national education nonprofit. Ushomirsky says the educational&nbsp; opportunities for rich and poor kids are &ldquo;anything but equal&rdquo; and &ldquo;the resulting relationship between schools&rsquo; poverty rates and achievement (flies) in the face of our national values.&rdquo;</p><p>How poverty impacts schools &mdash; and how well schools educate low-income children &mdash; are vital questions for the state. For the first time, in 2014, more than half of Illinois public school kids &mdash; 51.5 percent &mdash; were considered low-income, up from 39 percent a decade ago.</p><p>And across the country, the gap between how well poor and wealthy students perform on standardized tests has grown wider in the past 50 years.</p><p>&ldquo;The impact of poverty has to be included in our conversation,&rdquo; says new state schools superintendent Tony Smith in response to the WBEZ/<em>Daily Herald</em> analysis. Smith was appointed by Gov. Bruce Rauner in April. &ldquo;[Poverty] is a big deal, it needs to be paid attention to,&rdquo; says Smith, who also says government policies helped create and structure poverty over the past century, and that government policies are needed to ensure equal educational opportunity.</p><p>&ldquo;You can&rsquo;t tell me that only kids in high-wealth, white neighborhoods have the &lsquo;college DNA&rsquo; &mdash; that&rsquo;s ridiculous,&rdquo; Smith says. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s something about how we&rsquo;re structured that is sorting opportunity. We&rsquo;re wasting massive, massive human potential by not figuring out a way to increase access and support for all of our kids.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">More than a million low-income students</span></p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/SunnyHillSuccess_2.jpg" style="height: 412px; width: 620px;" title="Sunny Hill Elementary teacher Nancy Kontney works with students in the Carpentersville school. Sunny Hill is one of 649 schools in Illinois where more than 90 percent of students are low income. The number of Illinois schools dealing with concentrated poverty has swelled in the last decade. (The Daily Herald/Brian Hill)" /></div></div></div><p>Illinois now has more than a million low-income students. (&ldquo;Low-income&rdquo; status is determined by eligibility for free or reduced-price lunch at school. That figure was $43,568 for a family of four in 2013-14.)</p><p>In contrast to what many might think, all the growth in low-income students in the last decade has come outside the city of Chicago &mdash; which actually saw its population of poor students decrease by 29,000 over the last decade.&nbsp;</p><p>In 2004, more than 45 percent of the state&rsquo;s low-income public school students attended Chicago public schools. Today, that figure is 32 percent&mdash; and falling.</p><p>Meanwhile, on average, Illinois school districts have seen a 15 percentage point increase in the proportion of their student body that&rsquo;s considered low-income.</p><p>In Elgin Area Unit District U-46, the sheer number of low-income students in the district has nearly doubled over the last 10 years. The district now enrolls 24,003 low-income students, more than any district outside of Chicago.</p><p>Plainfield SD 202, the state&rsquo;s fourth largest school district, educates 10 times more low-income students than it did a decade ago. It ranks 16th in the state in terms of the number of poor students it enrolls; a decade ago, the district did not even rank within the top 100.&nbsp;</p><p>Indian Prairie CUSD 204 &mdash; with schools in Naperville, Aurora and Bolingbrook, including vaunted high schools like Neuqua Valley &mdash; has followed a similar trajectory. That district in 2004 enrolled just 780 low-income kids out of 26,147 students total. Low-income students accounted for just 3 percent of its student body. Today District 204 enrolls 5,088 low-income kids, 18 percent of all students. The district ranks 20th in the state for the number of low-income students it serves.</p><p>Jason Klein, chief information officer at Wheeling District 21, says when he started as a teacher at London Middle School in 1998 the low-income rate was below 15 percent, but the school considered that high poverty.</p><p>&ldquo;That&#39;s nothing compared to what we see today,&rdquo; he says; the school is now 53 percent low-income. &ldquo;I think there has been a significant shift, we see it with low-income numbers, with homelessness numbers and with the challenges our students bring to school.&rdquo;</p><p>The shifting demographics have been a struggle for suburban districts that historically were not used to dealing with large populations of low-income students. Klein says it can take some time for school districts to catch up with the changes. &ldquo;There&#39;s often a lag between when a school or district&#39;s demographics change and when the staff and community realizes that it&#39;s changed,&rdquo; he says.</p><p>A growing number of Illinois schools are also dealing with concentrated poverty &mdash; where nearly every student is considered low-income. The number of schools where more than 90 percent of children are low-income has swelled, from 421 schools in 2004 to 649 in 2014.</p><p>Today, 17 percent of all public school students in Illinois attend schools where 90-100 percent of students are low-income.</p><p>American society is more residentially segregated by income than it was in the past, says Greg Duncan, professor of economics and education at University of California-Irvine, and that is contributing to growing achievement gaps between rich and poor students.</p><p>Compared to a generation ago, &ldquo;low-income kids are more likely to have low-income neighbors, high-income kids high-income neighbors,&rdquo; says Duncan. What that means for schools is &ldquo;quite troubling,&rdquo; he says.</p><p>&ldquo;Having a mixture of income brings a lot of benefits for low-income kids. Because the [higher income] parents are bringing higher levels of education, they may be more demanding about the teaching and other kinds of standards in the schools.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">What money can buy</span>&mdash;<span style="font-size:22px;">an enhanced education</span></p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1005312528-TefftSuccess_15.jpg" style="height: 398px; width: 620px;" title="Asst. Principal David Harshbarger with 7th grader Jose Huerta during a required after school homework session at Tefft Middle School in Streamwood. Experts say that affluent parents now spend 0,000 per child per year on enrichment for their children—everything from music lessons to summer camps to private tutoring. That’s increased the burden on schools to keep low-income kids learning at the same pace. (The Daily Herald/Bob Chwedyk)" /></div></div><p>Researchers and advocates for poor students say there are lots of reasons why poverty impacts achievement in school.</p><p>&ldquo;One has to do with the things that money can buy,&rdquo; says Larry Joseph, director of research at Voices for Illinois Children. &ldquo;More affluent families can invest more resources in their children&#39;s development. Those investments include health care, adequate nutrition, early learning opportunities, home computers, dance lessons... summer camp, and safe and supportive neighborhoods. And also access to higher quality schools.&rdquo;</p><p>Joseph says poverty also takes an emotional toll that impacts academics. Unstable employment and financial insecurity increase family stress. That can adversely affect the quality of parenting and family relationships, and put stress on children who would otherwise be focusing their energy on learning, Joseph says.</p><p>Schools don&rsquo;t cause achievement gaps, researchers say. Gaps between poor and non-poor students are present even before kids get to school.</p><p>&ldquo;They are coming into kindergarten already behind,&rdquo; says Robin Steans, executive director at Advance Illinois, a group that has fought to reform school funding in the state to drive more dollars to low-income students. &ldquo;They haven&#39;t had exposure to letters, numbers or how to navigate a classroom, how to sit still, how to work cooperatively with others. All of which makes it harder for them to catch up.&rdquo;</p><p>Even getting to school can be a challenge for low-income kids, from difficulty affording transportation to not having a safe passage to walk to school, says Elaine Allensworth, director of the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the Urban Education Institute at the University of Chicago.</p><p>&ldquo;In the poorest areas of the city you also have students more likely to be exposed to traumatic events, to violence, to having issues with housing instability,&rdquo; Allensworth says. &ldquo;These are really, really stressful events for kids.&rdquo;</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">What can be done?</span></p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1005312528-TefftSuccess_16.jpg" style="height: 432px; width: 620px;" title="Language arts instructor Jamie Reyes leads her group to a required after school homework session at Tefft Middle School in Streamwood. Some people, including Illinois’ new superintendent of education, say the state must improve schools but must also attack childhood poverty more directly to see better school performance. (The Daily Herald/Bob Chwedyk)" /></div></div><p>Many see school funding in Illinois as a glaring issue exacerbating poverty&rsquo;s impact on learning and schools.</p><p>&ldquo;Achievement gaps are a direct result of gaps in opportunity to learn,&rdquo; said Natasha Ushomirsky of the Education Trust, whose mission is to eliminate gaps for poor and minority students.&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;The highest poverty districts in Illinois get nearly 20 percent less in state and local funding per child than the lowest poverty districts,&rdquo; says Ushomirsky, citing a recent Education Trust study she authored that analyzed education funding across the country.</p><p>That study, released this year, found Illinois has the widest funding gaps in the nation between low- and high-income schools.</p><p>Ushomirsky says inequities in funding &ldquo;underlie all sorts of other inequities in our school system.&rdquo; Districts that spend more per pupil can offer more competitive teacher salaries, they can buy extra enrichment and support&mdash;&ldquo;which are things that are important to all students. But they&rsquo;re especially important for those children who may not get access to these opportunities outside of school.&rdquo;</p><p>Ushomirsky&rsquo;s group also advocates for school policies that don&rsquo;t necessarily cost more &mdash; they support new Common Core standards, they want states to be more selective in determining who can become a teacher. They want schools to assign the best teachers to the neediest kids, and ensure that teachers truly believe all kids can learn.</p><p>Michael Petrilli, of the conservative Thomas B. Fordham Institute, says money isn&rsquo;t the fundamental problem. And he says taking a school&rsquo;s poverty rate into account is important, but more important is the growth students make in a school.</p><p>&ldquo;If you&#39;re a school that has low test scores and is not helping kids make progress&hellip;those schools need to face significant reforms or they need to close.&rdquo; Petrilli calls it the &ldquo;tough love&rdquo; approach to education reform. &ldquo;If the school is too dysfunctional, at some point you have to give up on that school, shut it down and open up new schools to replace it with a vision and strategy to get the job done.&rdquo; He laments that more Chicago charter schools haven&rsquo;t opened in the suburbs, where poverty is spreading.</p><p>But Larry Joseph of Voices for Illinois Children insists that the stranglehold poverty has on school achievement cannot be solved by schools alone. He says long-term economic restructuring over the past decades has exacerbated income inequality in the country. &ldquo;And schools themselves can&rsquo;t do anything about that.&rdquo;</p><p>&ldquo;Schools don&rsquo;t operate in a vacuum,&rdquo; says Joseph. &ldquo;There are other strategies that can alleviate child poverty in the short term and reduce it in the long term that also need to be pursued.&rdquo;</p><p>Joseph points to expanded preschool programs, federal tax credits for working poor families, and food stamps as strategies that most help kids. He says daycare assistance programs&mdash;recently targeted for cuts by Gov. Bruce Rauner&rsquo;s administration&mdash;are also vital in reducing poverty.</p><p>Duncan, the UC-Irvine professor, says that with affluent parents now spending $10,000 per child per year on enrichment for their children&mdash;everything from music lessons to summer camps to private tutoring&mdash;the burden on schools to keep low-income kids learning at the same pace as upper-income kids &ldquo;has increased very substantially.&rdquo; He stresses that test scores have improved for all children since the 1970s &mdash; including poor children. But upper-income children&rsquo;s scores have improved more, widening the gap.</p><p>Still, Duncan says, schools have to be part of a solution. &ldquo;You can&rsquo;t just say, It&rsquo;s too complicated&mdash;let&rsquo;s redistribute income, so family incomes are more equal. You just can&rsquo;t give up on K-12 schooling.&rdquo;</p><p>Duncan, who has written a book highlighting a handful of successful high-poverty schools and school systems, says it&rsquo;s important to identify and learn from such schools, &ldquo;and try to expand those lessons and scale them up on a much wider basis.&rdquo;</p><p><em>The Daily Herald <a href="http://reportcards.dailyherald.com/lowincome/" target="_blank">continues this series on poverty and school achievement this week</a>. WBEZ will be following the series on the </em>Morning Shift<em>.</em></p><p><em>Linda Lutton is an education reporter at WBEZ.<br />Melissa Silverberg is an education reporter at the Daily Herald.<br />Tim Broderick is news presentation editor at the Daily Herald.</em></p></p> Mon, 22 Jun 2015 05:30:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/povertys-enduring-hold-school-success-112201 Parents bond over closing of a Chicago public school http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/parents-bond-over-closing-chicago-public-school-112075 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/StoryCorps 150521 Jeanette Angela bh.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>In 2013, Chicago Public Schools closed fifty schools as part of a restructuring. When Angela Ross found out her kids&rsquo; elementary school was closing, she could hardly believe it. Then Jeanette Ramann and other parents from a nearby Bronzeville school came to help with the transition. Today, Ross and Ramann are friends and fellow education advocates.</p><p><em>StoryCorps&rsquo; mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to share, record and preserve their stories. These excerpts, edited by WBEZ, present some of our favorites from the current visit, as well as from previous trips.</em></p><p><em>This story was recorded as part of a collaboration between StoryCorps Chicago and <a href="http://schoolprojectfilm.com">The School Project</a> </em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 22 May 2015 09:08:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/parents-bond-over-closing-chicago-public-school-112075 Afternoon Shift: The state of Chicago’s Catholic schools http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-19/afternoon-shift-state-chicago%E2%80%99s-catholic-schools-112055 <p><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/521148646_1ad14eeebd_z.jpg" style="height: 415px; width: 620px;" title="(Photo: Flickr/Stephen Kallao)" /></div></div><p>&nbsp;</p><p><iframe width="100%" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206274349&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Chicago Catholic high schools face closures</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3">On WBEZ we have a lot of conversations about the state of our public school system. But there are also more than 80,000 students in the Catholic school system here in Chicago. in 2014, the Archdiocese said about a dozen of its 240 schools would either be closed or merged. Several of those schools that are closing will hold their final graduation ceremonies in a few weeks. </span>We assess the state of the Catholic school system and &nbsp;talk about the impact of the continuing closures. We also hear from the principal of a storied high school on Chicago&rsquo;s South Side that reports a 100 percent college enrollment rate and is in danger of closing.<br /><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em>Nichole Jackson is principal at&nbsp;<a href="http://www.halesfranciscanhs.org/">Hales Franciscan School</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3">Ryan James is a sophomore at&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.halesfranciscanhs.org/">Hales Franciscan School</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3">Michael James is a&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.halesfranciscanhs.org/">Hales Franciscan School</a>&nbsp;parent.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3">Thomas McGrath is Chief Operating Officer for Catholic Schools at the&nbsp;</span><a href="http://archchicago.org/">Archdiocese of Chicago</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3">Angela Ybarra is a&nbsp;</span><a href="http://www.sthyacinthbasilicaschool.org/">St. Hyacinth Basilica</a>&nbsp;parent.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e32-cc0d-e9fb-32487d8b4fb3"><a href="http://law.nd.edu/directory/nicole-garnett/">Nicole Stelle Garnett</a></span>&nbsp;is policy coordinator at the Alliance for Catholic Education and law professor at University of Notre Dame.</em></li></ul><p><iframe width="100%" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206274087&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Journalist brings together Holocaust survivors and the son of a WWII soldier</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e36-f147-7960-21e0ccefa439">70 years ago, in May of 1945, US army soldiers - including the 11th Armored Division liberated the Nazi concentration camp Mauthausen in Austria. Among those soldiers was a Chicago sergeant named Albert Kosiek. Among the thousands of prisoners that Kosiek helped were three women who had just given birth. Mark Olsky is one of those babies. He joins us along with Larry Kosiek, one of Sergeant Kosiek&rsquo;s sons and Wendy Holden, the British journalist that brought them together. Wendy has documented this incredible story in her book, </span>Born Survivors: Three Young Mothers and Their Extraordinary Story of Courage, Defiance and Hope.<br /><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e36-f147-7960-21e0ccefa439"><a href="https://twitter.com/wendholden">Wendy Holden</a></span> is a journalist and author.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e36-f147-7960-21e0ccefa439"><a href="http://www.jsonline.com/news/milwaukee/born-amid-death-holocaust-survivors-life-comes-full-circle-b99478446z1-299459651.html">Mark Olsky</a></span> is a doctor and a Holocaust survivor.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e36-f147-7960-21e0ccefa439"><a href="http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20150518/news/150518755/">Larry Kosiek</a></span> is the son of Sgt. Albert Kosiek.</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206271451&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Gloria Estefan musical debuts in Chicago</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3a-1d2a-021c-779e4a9a78b2">Gloria Estefan is known as the queen of Latin Pop. The Cuban-American songstress is one of the most recognizable artists in the world, and now her life has been put to yet another soundtrack. </span>On Your Feet! is the bio-musical of Gloria and her husband, Emilio Estefan. The show makes its pre-Broadway premiere here in Chicago on June 2. We caught up with the Estefans at the Oriental Theater to speak about their new show.</p><p dir="ltr"><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3a-1d2a-021c-779e4a9a78b2">Guests:</span></strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3a-1d2a-021c-779e4a9a78b2"><a href="https://twitter.com/GloriaEstefan">Gloria Estefan</a></span> is a singer, songwriter and actress.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3a-1d2a-021c-779e4a9a78b2"><a href="https://twitter.com/EmilioEstefanJr">Emilio Estefan</a></span> is a producer and director.&nbsp;</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206271457&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Prices on the rise in Chicago&#39;s trendy neighborhoods</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">For anyone who follows Chicago real estate, the list of the hottest neighborhoods comes as no surprise: you&rsquo;ve got West Town, the Near West Side, Logan Square, Avondale, Lincoln Square and North Center. They&rsquo;re also the neighborhoods that have seen the greatest price appreciation since 2000. Dennis Rodkin from Crain&rsquo;s Chicago Business breaks down what it means for Chicago&rsquo;s housing market.</p><p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3b-534f-e4da-b2a2594c91b0">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/Dennis_Rodkin">Dennis Rodkin</a> is a Crain&rsquo;s Chicago Business reporter.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206262122&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Tech Shift: The origins of Bitcoin with Nathaniel Popper</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3c-e1a3-729e-3e0fede3fa8d">Ever since Bitcoin was created in 2008 it has gotten a lot of buzz. Wall Street, whole governments and even presidential candidates have expressed interest in the viability of the digital currency. But it hasn&#39;t exactly changed the world yet. Could it? </span><em>New York Times</em> reporter Nathaniel Popper has a new book out, <em>Digital Gold: Bitcoin and the Inside Story of the Misfits and Millionaires Trying to Reinvent Money</em>. He joins us to dig into the secretive history of Bitcoin. &nbsp;&nbsp;<br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong><em> <a href="https://twitter.com/nathanielpopper">Nathaniel Popper</a> is a reporter and author of the book &quot;Digital Gold.&quot;</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206126356&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Illinois uses &quot;lifebooks&quot; to help foster kids maintain a real sense of where they came from</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">This story is about kids in foster care in Illinois. You&rsquo;re probably bracing for sad information. And there&rsquo;s some of that. But mainly, this is a story about a little tool designed to help kids in temporary homes maintain a real sense of who they are and where they came from. WBEZ&rsquo;s Patrick Smith has more.</p><p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e3e-e181-e9ec-19250a2c4143">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/pksmid">Patrick Smith</a> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206271465&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Experts brainstorm solutions to Chicago&#39;s money problems</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">As Mayor Rahm Emanuel begins his second term in office, the City of Chicago is in a precarious financial situation. In May, all three credit ratings agencies downgraded the city. Chicago Public Schools and the park district also took a hit. Chicago is facing a $550 million hole for fire and police pensions, and a billion dollar budget deficit for CPS. Tuesday at the City Club of Chicago, financial experts came together to break down the city&rsquo;s financial woes and to discuss solutions. WBEZ&rsquo;s Susie An and Brian Battle of the Chicago-based advisory firm, Performance Trust, join us with details</p><p dir="ltr"><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e40-c351-19c2-175ffe0be883">Guests: </span></strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><a href="https://twitter.com/soosieon"><em>Susie An</em></a><em> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e40-c351-19c2-175ffe0be883"><a href="http://www.performancetrust.com/what-we-do/analytics-group/bios#brian-j-battle">Brian Battle</a></span> is a Director of Analytics Group at Performance Trust.</em></li></ul><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206271467&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><p style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Cook County jail gets a new boss</span></p><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);">For what&rsquo;s believed to be the first time, a clinical psychologist has been named to lead the Cook County Jail. Dr. Nneka Jones Tapia will manage the facility and its eight thousand inmates, one quarter of which have a mental health issue. Dr. Jones Tapia helped to launch the mental health transition center with Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart, which provides immediate mental health services to people accused of petty crimes. Sheriff Dart introduced Dr. Jones Tapia on Tuesday at the center, WBEZ&rsquo;s Yolanda Perdomo was at the event and has details.</p><p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-dd6b2f9d-6e41-d301-6dcf-a1b59417fb17">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/yolandanews">Yolanda Perdomo</a> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></p></p> Tue, 19 May 2015 16:58:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-19/afternoon-shift-state-chicago%E2%80%99s-catholic-schools-112055 Afternoon Shift: Caring for loved ones with Alzheimer’s and dementia http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-18/afternoon-shift-caring-loved-ones-alzheimer%E2%80%99s-and-dementia <p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Ronn%20aka%20Blue%20Aldaman.jpg" style="height: 414px; width: 620px;" title="(Photo: Flickr/Ronn aka " /></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206108650&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">How to care for loved ones with Alzheimer&#39;s and dementia</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6914-d4f1-1011-51e206ff8745">Alzheimer&rsquo;s is now the sixth leading cause of death among U.S. adults. We discuss the difference between Alzheimer&rsquo;s and dementia, what signs you need to look for, and what the latest in treatment and research can tell us. For this discussion we are joined by Janette Foley, of Chicagoland Methodist Senior Services and Bob Tucker, &nbsp;a senior advocate at the Alzheimer&rsquo;s Foundation of America in Northbrook.</span><br /><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6914-d4f1-1011-51e206ff8745">Janette Foley is the administrator for dementia services at </span><a href="http://www.cmsschicago.org/about-us/staff-board-members.aspx">Chicagoland Methodist Senior Services</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6914-d4f1-1011-51e206ff8745">Bob Tucker is a senior advocate at the </span><a href="http://www.alzfdn.org/">Alzheimer&rsquo;s Foundation of America</a> in Northbrook.</em></li></ul></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206108330&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Pint of Science brings together scientists, the public and booze</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6916-3616-27f3-ab08d6b86d2e">Talking science with scientists might seem impossible or at least intimidating for the average person. But Pint of Science, a global event now in its third year, wants to provide that opportunity and make it more relaxed...which is why it&rsquo;s at a bar. So, if you feel like stopping off for a drink after work and you want a quick science lesson and the opportunity to talk to an actual scientist, this is the fest for you. Pint of Science runs May 18 - 20. &nbsp;</span><br /><br /><strong>Guests:</strong></p><ul dir="ltr"><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6916-3616-27f3-ab08d6b86d2e">Tim Fessenden is a PhD student at the University of Chicago and Marketing Director for </span><a href="https://twitter.com/pintofscienceUS?lang=en">Pint of Science</a> Chicago.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6916-3616-27f3-ab08d6b86d2e">Katie Long is a MD-PhD student at the University of Chicago and City Coordinator for </span><a href="https://pintofscience.us/teams/chicago-team/">Pint of Science Chicago</a>.</em></li><li><em><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6916-3616-27f3-ab08d6b86d2e"><a href="https://twitter.com/danthecancerman">Daniel Leventhal</a></span> is a graduate student at the University of Chicago and Pint of Science Chicago City Coordinator.</em></li></ul></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/205368904&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Inauguration day means new faces and tough issues at City Hall</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-6918-1c87-48bf-b546451c17fc">May 18 is inauguration day 2015 in Chicago. Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the city clerk, treasurer and the new City Council were sworn in on Monday at the Chicago Theater. WBEZ&rsquo;s Lauren Chooljian introduces us to the new aldermen and the issues they&rsquo;ll face this term. </span><br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong><em> <a href="http://www.twitter.com/laurenchooljian">Lauren Chooljian</a> is WBEZ&rsquo;s city politics reporter.</em></p></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206107496&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Meet the new City Council</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-691c-75a3-9fac-c3841646a57a">Chicago&rsquo;s City Council was sworn in on Monday, May 18. Thirteen newcomers were added to this term&rsquo;s class of aldermen and they&rsquo;ll be facing some of the toughest issues ever to come before the City Council. Aldertrack&rsquo;s Mike Fourcher joins us to talk about the inauguration and what we can expect from our new City Council. </span><br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="http://www.twitter.com/vouchey">Mike Fourcher</a> is a founder of Aldertrack.</em></p></div><p><br /><br /><iframe width="100%" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206109975&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Tech Shift: How to upset the downward trend of women in tech</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;"><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-691d-fdef-cf4c-1cc075138878">Suzanne Muchin leads Mind + Matter Studio in Chicago. She and Amanda Lannert, CEO of Jellyvision, were tired of the trend pieces and think pieces about the problem of women being underrepresented in tech businesses that didn&rsquo;t focus enough on tangible solutions. So they published a list of the five things they&rsquo;re dedicated to actually doing to help boost women in the workplace. Suzanne joins us in studio to explain the piece in detail.</span><br /><br /><strong>Guest:</strong> <em><a href="about:blank">Suzanne Muchin</a> is a founder of <a href="http://mindandmatterstudio.com/about-us/about-rachel-suzanne/">Mind + Matter Studio</a>.</em></p></div><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206107499&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false" width="100%"></iframe></p><div class="image-insert-image " style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><span style="font-size: 24px;">Avian flu continues to impact Midwest poultry&nbsp;</span></div><div style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: 22px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51);"><p dir="ltr" style="margin: 0px 0px 18px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-family: inherit; font-size: inherit; font-style: inherit; font-variant: inherit; font-weight: inherit; font-stretch: inherit; line-height: inherit; vertical-align: baseline;">Avian flu is on the rise across the Midwest. It&rsquo;s affecting poultry flocks in more than a dozen states including Minnesota, Indiana, and Iowa, where 40% of all egg hens have the disease. WBEZ food reporter Monica Eng has details about what this means for farmers and consumers.</p><strong><span id="docs-internal-guid-bb640378-691e-b92b-3104-4ba8187facb8">Guest: </span></strong><em><a href="https://twitter.com/monicaeng">Monica Eng</a> is a WBEZ reporter.</em></div><p>&nbsp;</p><iframe width="100%" height="166" scrolling="no" frameborder="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/206107506&amp;color=ff5500&amp;auto_play=false&amp;hide_related=false&amp;show_comments=true&amp;show_user=true&amp;show_reposts=false&amp;show_artwork=false"></iframe></p> Mon, 18 May 2015 16:55:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2015-05-18/afternoon-shift-caring-loved-ones-alzheimer%E2%80%99s-and-dementia Were Chicago's public schools ever good? http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/were-chicagos-public-schools-ever-good-112025 <p><p>Our questioner Julie had completely forgotten she asked this when we reached out to her. She lives in Chicago&rsquo;s North Center neighborhood and didn&rsquo;t want to say much more about herself. But here&rsquo;s what she wanted to know:</p><p dir="ltr" style="text-align: center;"><em>There is reporting about how Chicago Public Schools is slowly getting better. Was there ever a time when they were <strong>good</strong>?</em></p><p>As an education reporter, I&rsquo;ve heard many versions of this question during <a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/bvevea" target="_blank">my time covering Chicago Public Schools</a>, and that&rsquo;s partly why I wanted to take a stab at answering it. But I also wanted to tackle this question because it asks us to think about our relationship with the public schools and what we expect them to do.</p><p>Measuring a school or school district&rsquo;s success or failure is no easy feat, and it&rsquo;s even harder to measure over time because the standards and metrics have changed significantly. <a href="https://ccsr.uchicago.edu/sites/default/files/publications/Trends_CPS_Full_Report.pdf" target="_blank">A recent study from the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research</a> stated that &ldquo;discrepancies are due to myriad issues with publicly reported data &mdash; including changes in test content and scoring &mdash; that make year-over-year comparisons nearly impossible without complex statistical analyses.&rdquo;</p><p>Because the definition of &ldquo;good&rdquo; is subjective,<a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/good-school-bad-school-how-should-we-measure-111736" target="_blank"> we solicited your help</a> in defining how to use it while reporting this story. Some of you suggested using standardized test scores, which go back decades. (Schools haven&rsquo;t used the same test over time, making comparisons difficult.) Others suggested we consider grades or safety.</p><p>Ultimately, we decided to look at when CPS did a good job preparing students for successful careers; that is: When did the district best prepare people to be productive, taxpaying citizens? Career readiness is a consistent expectation, and it&rsquo;s possible to compare one era to another.</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">The 1940s, a Golden Era?</span></p><p>Based on this measurement and what historians and other experts suggested, the 1940s would seem the best contender for the district&rsquo;s golden era of public education. Schools provided valuable workforce training that was needed in the local industries, like steel and iron work, retail and office or clerical jobs.</p><p>The 1940s saw the culmination of a series of unprecedented investments in public education, mostly from the federal government. The Smith-Hughes Act of 1917 funneled millions of dollars into vocational training. Chicago schools set up programs in accounting, drafting, welding, and even &ldquo;household arts.&rdquo;</p><p>After a lag during the Great Depression, the war effort and New Deal programs brought even more vocational programs. One example: In 1939, the city built <a href="http://www.wbez.org/blogs/lee-bey/2012-05/school-architecture-look-sprawling-chicago-vocational-99372">Chicago Vocational High School</a>, and quickly turned it over to the U.S. Navy to train young men in aviation mechanics. (By the late 1940s, control of the school returned to the Chicago Board of Education.)</p><div class="image-insert-image ">Another example to point to: More than a dozen local unions collaborated with and supported the programs at Washburne Trade School to train future electricians and carpenters.</div><div class="image-insert-image ">&nbsp;</div><div class="image-insert-image "><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/lane tech automobile dept.JPG" style="height: 389px; width: 620px;" title="New Deal programs of the 1940s brought more vocational programs to public education, like this automobile shop class at Albert Grannis Lane Manual Training High School, now named Lane Technical College Prep High School in Chicago's North Center Neighborhood. (Courtesy Chuckman's nostalgia and memorabilia website) " /></div></div><p>But Dionne Danns, an education historian at Indiana University, provides a fast reality check when it comes to assessing the era. She points out that, at the turn of the century, and into the 1940s, people did not even need a high school diploma. In fact, most people weren&rsquo;t even finishing elementary school.</p><p>&ldquo;You didn&rsquo;t have to go to school for a job,&rdquo; Danns says. &ldquo;You went to school because they wanted you to go. They were opening more schools because they wanted immigrants to go to school and learn what it meant to be American.&rdquo;</p><p>And more importantly, Danns says, the 1940s can&rsquo;t count as a golden era of public schooling because schools were not providing education to all children; African Americans, Latinos and other minority groups did not have access to the same public schools as whites.</p><p>Women were just beginning to gain access to colleges and careers. Many attended the Lucy Flower Vocational School, which offered a home economics program and some two-year programs in sewing, dressmaking and millinery (hat-making).</p><p>A <a href="http://ecommons.luc.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1770&amp;context=luc_diss">study</a> out of Loyola University pegged Chicago Vocational High School enrollment in 1946 at 2,721 students. Just 204 were girls. Another all-girls school opened that year. Richards Vocational High School had an enrollment of 230 women and offered curriculum in home arts, dressmaking, beauty culture, and bookkeeping among other things.</p><p>&ldquo;We can&rsquo;t underestimate the role schools played in maintaining inequalities in society,&rdquo; Danns says.</p><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1964%20map.jpg" style="float: right; height: 502px; width: 350px;" title="Locations of integrated and segregated elementary schools in Chicago, 1964. (Source: Board of Education)" /><span style="font-size:22px;">Better schools, more students</span></p><p>What about looking for the CPS golden era of career readiness just a bit later, perhaps sometime in the &lsquo;50s or &lsquo;60s? It&rsquo;s tempting, because the inequalities we saw in the 1940s were challenged in 1954, when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Brown v. Board of Education that segregated schools are &ldquo;inherently unequal&rdquo; and therefore, unconstitutional.</p><p>By the 1960s, African Americans were enrolling in public schools that had been historically all white. And for a while, schools were integrating.</p><p>In 1964 Paul Goren (today, the Superintendent of District 65 in Evanston) was in kindergarten in the city&rsquo;s Avalon Park neighborhood. Hanging on his office wall are three class photos: one each from 1964, 1967 and 1968. In the 1964 photo, half of the smiling children are white, the other half are African American. The 1968 picture, though, shows just three white students.</p><p>Goren says that in his class of about thirty or so, those last three white children were the last three white children left in the entire school.</p><p>&ldquo;What I remember very distinctly, and again, it&rsquo;s characterized in the pictures up above, was arguments kids were making saying, &lsquo;We&rsquo;re moving!&rsquo; &lsquo;Oh, why are you moving?&rsquo; And the answer was because the schools are not good,&rdquo; Goren recalls. &ldquo;That sort of confused me, because the schools didn&rsquo;t seem to be any different than they were when they were frankly, all white.&rdquo;</p><p>That same year, an advisory panel on integration warned the Chicago Board of Education that whites were fleeing the district in mass numbers.</p><p>The board dragged its feet and did little to prevent white flight during the 1960s, but by 1970 the board started systematic attempts to integrate the schools.</p><p>It created the first generation of magnet schools, many of which are still successful today: Whitney Young, Disney, and Inter-American, among others. They were endowed with special programs and extra resources that would attract white students and African Americans. Students applied from all over the city and their names were essentially, picked out of a hat.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/metro%20high%20school%20yearbook%201978.PNG" style="height: 457px; width: 620px;" title="Metro High School's curriculum was built on the idea of the city being a classroom, and held classes at places like the Shedd Aquarium and Second City. (Source: Metro High School yearbook, 1978)" /></div><p>Goren went to one such school, called Metro High (or, Chicago Public High School for Metropolitan Studies). Not only was it an experiment in diversity, the school had a <a href="http://www.metrohschicago.com/bonus/Cycle3catalog1973.pdf">unique curriculum</a>. Goren took classes across the city: marine biology at Shedd Aquarium, animal behavior at Lincoln Park Zoo, and public speaking at Second City.</p><p>&ldquo;For me the golden era was my time at Metro High School,&rdquo; Goren says. The school closed in 1991.<img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/goren.PNG" style="height: 235px; width: 275px; float: right;" title="Paul Goren, right, at Metro High School in 1975. " /></p><p>Goren says many of the kids who attended Metro and other magnet schools were propelled into good careers in law and medicine. He has several friends who are now teachers in the area, as well.</p><p>But a lot of Chicago kids weren&rsquo;t that lucky. Magnet schools became isolated islands of success, but if you didn&rsquo;t get into one, public education was a mixed bag. &nbsp;</p><p>Among other problems, inequalities persisted. Danns says when schools started to integrate, local trade unions pulled support from Washburne Trade School. An <a href="http://articles.chicagotribune.com/1986-11-27/news/8603290329_1_apprenticeship-public-schools-board">article</a> from the Chicago Tribune in 1986, mentioned that in 1963 fewer than 2 percent of apprentices at Washburne were black.</p><p>In other words, even with years of effort on the part of the district, a career-ready curriculum remained out of reach for large swaths of CPS students.</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">&#39;Worst in the nation&#39;</span></p><p>There are few reasons to argue that CPS was at its best in the &lsquo;80s, because (among other reasons), CPS ran into financial troubles throughout the decade. Also, between 1979 to 1987, Chicago teachers went on strike nine times. Districts started measuring achievement and looking at dropout rates, and in Chicago, things did not look great.</p><p>In 1987, then-U.S. Secretary of Education William Bennett famously characterized Chicago schools as &ldquo;the worst&rdquo; in the nation. More than half of all students were dropping out of high school at the same time the value of a high school degree was increasing. Factory jobs had all but disappeared and the country was still recovering from the 1982 recession.</p><p><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="349" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/VC8dPdPo9Tg?rel=0&amp;controls=0&amp;showinfo=0" width="620"></iframe></p><p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-family:arial,helvetica,sans-serif;"><span style="font-size:10px;">Above: A short video recollection from a CPS teacher about the 1980s strike. (YouTube/Chicago Teachers Union)</span></span></p><p>Susan Lofton was a teacher in the early 1990s and vividly remembers being locked out because CPS couldn&rsquo;t make payroll.</p><p>&ldquo;All of a sudden was told don&rsquo;t go to work on Monday,&rdquo; Lofton says. &ldquo;I remember going to an unemployment office where there was literally a roped off area for teachers to go be processed.&rdquo;</p><p>In 1988, the Illinois General Assembly passed the first Chicago School Reform Act, creating local school councils at each individual school. Many schools improved under this model, but others did not.</p><p>In 1995, the state gave total control of CPS to mayor Richard M. Daley. This started the last era we&rsquo;re going to consider. &nbsp;</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">More success than we realize</span></p><p>I&rsquo;m going to suggest something that might surprise you. Maybe, just maybe, we&rsquo;re living in CPS&rsquo; golden era right now.</p><p>There&rsquo;s a growing body of evidence that Chicago&rsquo;s schools are improving quickly and &mdash; for certain populations of students &mdash; doing better than other districts. <em>U.S. News and World Report</em> just released its annual rankings of the nation&rsquo;s best high schools: <a href="http://www.cityofchicago.org/city/en/depts/mayor/press_room/press_releases/2015/may/six-chicago-public-high-schools-among-top-ten-in-the-state--u-s-.html">Six of the top 10 in Illinois are in CPS and another three in the top 20.</a></p><p>&ldquo;When the state&rsquo;s not doing well or not making great progress, there&rsquo;s always some number of people who say, &lsquo;Well maybe that&rsquo;s just because Chicago&rsquo;s not doing well. Maybe they&rsquo;re just dragging down the rest of the state,&rsquo;&rdquo; says Robin Steans, executive director of <a href="http://www.advanceillinois.org/">Advance Illinois, a bipartisan group focused on improving the state&rsquo;s education policy</a>. &ldquo;What we found is that&rsquo;s not true. Chicago has made steady gains both academically and in terms of some critical outcomes, like graduation.&rdquo;</p><p>Steans&rsquo; group looked at scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress, from 2003 to 2013 and found Chicago students grew 11 points on the 8th grade math test and 7 points on the 4th grade reading test. The state grew just 7 points and 3 points, respectively.</p><p>Advance Illinois also compiled state graduation data from 2014 to compare Chicago with other districts for certain subgroups of students. They found that Latino students enrolled in CPS are more likely to graduate high school than their counterparts in many suburban districts, including Maine Township High Schools and Evanston Township High School.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s so counterintuitive to what they think they know about Chicago that they just disregard it,&rdquo; Steans says of the data. &ldquo;There&rsquo;s been so much noise, with the teachers strike and the school closings. The political heat and noise tends to crowd out what&rsquo;s actually beneath and behind that.&rdquo;</p><p><a href="http://urbanedleadership.org/about-us/people/paul-zavitkovsky/" target="_blank">Paul Zavitkovsky</a>, a&nbsp;leadership coach and assessment specialist&nbsp;at the Urban Education Leadership Program at the University of Illinois - Chicago, may be able to help. In a forthcoming study, Zavitkovsky&rsquo;s findings mirror what Advance Illinois found.</p><p>&ldquo;On an apples-for-apples basis, if you compare yourself with your counterparts based on race and socioeconomic status in other parts of the state, you have a higher probability of having a better educational experience in Chicago,&rdquo; he says.</p><p>But Zavitkovsky goes further. He shared a preliminary version of the report with WBEZ that showed students in the 75th percentile for 4th grade math achievement grew 20 points between 2003 and 2013. The performance of that subgroup in the rest of the state grew only 3 points in the same amount of time.</p><p>However, he&rsquo;s not convinced CPS is in a &ldquo;golden era&rdquo; because of all this data. From Zavitkovsky&rsquo;s vantage, the real win is that we have more information than we&rsquo;ve ever had before,and that can better inform the national conversation about public schools.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re better positioned now than we&rsquo;ve ever been to know what we have to do in order to be able to get that kind of stuff into the hands and into the heads of more than just a small percentage of kids, coming primarily from the most privileged families in America,&rdquo; Zavitowsky says.</p><p>There&rsquo;s no easy way to measure job readiness and whether these improvements translate into more successful alumni. Short of picking up the phone and calling all the former students, CPS does not follow students into employment.</p><p>The closest indicator available is college persistence, and CPS also made gains in it during the last decade. A <a href="https://ccsr.uchicago.edu/publications/educational-attainment-chicago-public-schools-students-focus-four-year-college-degrees">report from the University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research</a> found that between 2006 and 2014, the percentage of CPS students earning a bachelor&rsquo;s degree within 6 years of high school graduation jumped from 8 percent to 14 percent. The national rate is 18 percent.</p><p><span style="font-size:22px;">Greater Expectations</span></p><p>I&rsquo;ve been reporting on CPS for more than four years and I&rsquo;ve covered a lot of the noise and dysfunction Steans mentioned. But I&rsquo;ve also reported on schools that are trying everything to improve.</p><p>They include schools like Senn High School in Edgewater. Susan Lofton, the teacher who remembers being in the unemployment line back in the 1990s, is now the principal at Senn. When she took over in 2010, the school had a bad name.</p><p>&ldquo;A-B-S,&rdquo; Lofton says, &ldquo;Anywhere But Senn.&rdquo;</p><p>Lofton created the Senn Arts magnet program and expanded the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/eight-forty-eight/2012-04-25/chicagos-middle-class-not-interested-hidden-gem-high-schools-98519">rigorous International Baccalaureate program</a>, which had long been a hidden gem.</p><p>She also recruited drama teacher Joel Ewing away from Walter Payton College Prep, a prestigious selective enrollment school.</p><div class="image-insert-image "><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/ewing.png" style="height: 413px; width: 620px;" title="Joel Ewing teaches a drama class at Senn High School. Previously a teacher at Walter Payton College Prep, Ewing says he accepted the position at Senn because he saw a void that needed to be filled. (WBEZ/Jesse Dukes)" /></div><p>&ldquo;When I took the job at Senn Arts, I got crooked heads,&rdquo; Ewing says. &ldquo;&lsquo;Why would you leave Walter Payton? That&#39;s clearly one of the best schools, in the city, state.&rsquo; ... I thought there was a void that needed to be filled. Payton is going to be alright.&rdquo;</p><p>Senn chose to become a little like a magnet school but still focus on neighborhood students &mdash; a strategy that lots of CPS schools are trying. But Lofton says the biggest hurdle to changing Senn&rsquo;s reputation has nothing to do with academics.</p><p>&ldquo;The first day I got here, I took the Red Line,&rdquo; Lofton recalls. &ldquo;I, myself, could barely get through the station to get myself to school. There were a lot of my kids there that were just loitering because, &lsquo;Hey! We don&rsquo;t go to school on time here.&rsquo;&rdquo;</p><p>Now, she and the other administrators start every morning at the Thorndale Red Line stop, shuffling students along and calling the cops on anyone else who, as she says, had no business being there.</p><p>Senn is not alone: Schools across the city worry about safety, sometimes even before academics. It&rsquo;s a big departure from past decades.Today, we expect schools to do more than we ever have. Making the local train stop safe? Since when is that in the job description of a principal or teacher? If Lofton and Senn staff want their students to be prepared for college and careers, they don&rsquo;t really have a choice not to.</p><p>The latest trends tempt me to say that the time we&rsquo;re looking for, when CPS schools were good ... is right now. The district&rsquo;s serving more students than ever and it&rsquo;s still making incremental progress, despite the noise and dysfunction that sometimes overshadow much of it. (As an education reporter, I know I share the blame for that.)</p><p>But I&#39;m not convinced this is the golden era; there&rsquo;s a lot of work to be done and that bad stuff I report on? It does really happen.</p><p>So, even if there was never a &ldquo;golden age&rdquo; and even if the idea itself is impossible, I think we have to keep asking questions, looking at what works and what doesn&rsquo;t and never stop highlighting those who are not being served.</p><p><em>Becky Vevea is a producer and reporter for WBEZ. You can follow her <a href="http://twitter.com/WBEZeducation">@WBEZeducation</a>.</em></p></p> Wed, 13 May 2015 17:50:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/curious-city/were-chicagos-public-schools-ever-good-112025 Election results mean new power at beleaguered College of DuPage http://www.wbez.org/news/election-results-mean-new-power-beleaguered-college-dupage-111849 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/cod.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>College of DuPage Board Vice Chair Katharine Hamilton wants school President Robert Breuder to step down before his planned 2016 departure date.</p><p>And after Tuesday&rsquo;s election, she should have the votes to make that happen.</p><p>Breuder has been at the center of several recent controversies at the school, which is the largest community college in Illinois. In January, the Board of Trustees voted 6-1 to give him a $763,000 buyout, with Hamilton casting the lone no vote.</p><p>And the <em>Chicago Tribune</em> has reported that the DuPage County State&rsquo;s Attorney is <a href="http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-college-of-dupage-investigation-subpoenas-20150331-story.html">investigating lavish spending by Breuder and his staff</a>.</p><p>Hamilton said DuPage County voters were responding to those issues when they elected three new trustees.</p><p>Deanne Mazzochi, Frank Napolitano and Charles Bernstein secured the three available seats on the board in the consolidated election on April 7 out of a field of 12. All three of them ran together under the &ldquo;Clean Slate&rdquo; ticket supported by Hamilton. They beat two incumbent board members and a former state representative.</p><p>Together with Hamilton, the three will make up a new majority on the seven member board. The board will elect a new chair in May and Hamilton expects to replace current Chair Erin Birt.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re gonna look at perhaps clawing back the excessive golden handshake that was provided to Dr. Brueder, and in addition to that, some reform policies that will restructure the college in a way that the board will have more power to lead the college,&rdquo; Hamilton said.</p><p>She called the recent controversies &ldquo;a symptom of the crisis in governance&rdquo; at the College of DuPage.</p><p>&ldquo;The failure of the current board to provide oversight is startling. So hopefully this new majority- and I&rsquo;m not just saying hopefully - I know that this new majority will be able to clamp down on those problems,&rdquo; Hamilton added.</p><p>Their plans include putting all of the college&rsquo;s transactions online for scrutiny by the public and creating a new audit committee.</p><p>In a statement, a college spokesman said the school looks &ldquo;forward to beginning a new chapter at the College of DuPage as we welcome the elected trustees to the Board.&rdquo;</p><p>Board Chair Erin Birt declined to be interviewed.</p><p><em>Patrick Smith is a WBEZ producer and reporter. Follow him on twitter @pksmid.</em></p></p> Thu, 09 Apr 2015 13:45:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/election-results-mean-new-power-beleaguered-college-dupage-111849 Principals to CPS: End custodial contract now http://www.wbez.org/news/principals-cps-end-custodial-contract-now-111735 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/main-images/2979169728_730927ae16_z_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago Public Schools principals have had it.</p><p>A survey conducted by the Chicago Principals and Administrators Association found nearly 90 percent of principals say their schools are dirtier than they were a year ago, just before the Chicago Board of Education gave control of all school cleaning services to two private companies -- Aramark and SodexoMagic.</p><p>The move led to hundreds of janitors being laid off, which in turn led to disorganization and dirty conditions. <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/custodial-contract-causing-problems-start-school-year-110767">WBEZ first reported issues</a> with cleanliness in schools last September.</p><p>Aramark and CPS scrambled to remedy the issue by <a href="http://www.wbez.org/news/aramark-cps-change-plan-cut-school-janitors-110870">not following through with some of the planned layoffs</a>. In October, they announced plans to only cut 290 custodians, not 468.</p><p>But it wasn&rsquo;t enough of a compromise for principals, said Clarice Berry, head of the principals&rsquo; group.</p><p>&ldquo;There is no negotiating with us anymore,&rdquo; Berry said. &ldquo;We&rsquo;re not listening to any more promises. We&rsquo;re not waiting anymore. You can not staff a school with 1,200 kids with two custodian workers and think it&rsquo;s going to work. Ever.&rdquo;</p><p>The contracts were collectively worth $340 million, $260 million for Aramark to oversee all 2,400-plus janitors, and $80 million to SodexoMAGIC to oversee cleaning at 33 schools.</p><p>&ldquo;This contract should be voidable, because they have not met the terms of the contract,&rdquo; Berry said, calling on the district to cut ties with Aramark.&nbsp;</p><p>At an unrelated press conference, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said he is in contact with Aramark and will hold the company accountable.</p><p>&ldquo;They better fix this,&rdquo; Emanuel said. &ldquo;If it&rsquo;s not (fixed), it&rsquo;s going to be a very short contract.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr">CPS chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett sent an e-mailed statement admitting the two companies faced a bumpy transition.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;They met with principals, worked collaboratively to address their concerns and adjusted staffing to meet the needs of our schools,&rdquo; the statement read. &ldquo;These efforts have ​paid off.&rdquo;</p><p>CPS spokesman Bill McCaffrey also included the results of an audit conducted at 308 schools showing just 17 schools falling under the cleanliness standards set forth in the contract.</p><p><em>Becky Vevea is an education reporter for WBEZ. Follow her <a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZeducation">@WBEZeducation</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 19 Mar 2015 16:18:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/principals-cps-end-custodial-contract-now-111735