Monday, April 1, 2013

The Guardian on Chicago/STL Style School Reform

Chicago is ground zero for disastrous 'free market' reforms of education

Chicago has turned public schools into privately run charters. The results aren't stellar and other cities should beware
Micah Uetricht - - The Guardian

"If you want a glimpse of what slash-and-burn free market education reform does in cities throughout the US, look no further than Chicago. Last week, Chicago Public Schools announced its plan to close 54 public elementary schools in the city by next year – about 8% of all public schools in the city. Almost all are located on the city's south and west sides in predominantly black neighborhoods.
In a city where the majority of black children live in poverty, in communities long plagued by hyper-segregationunemploymentyouth violence, and disinvestment, these neighborhoods will likely be thrown into further chaos, as students (91% of whom are students of color) are forced to cross into rival gang territories. Public schools, which served as one of the few remaining community anchors, will be shuttered.
Not all teachers unions have had the willingness or wherewithal to resist that agenda; many have capitulated, or at least been complicit. But the Chicago Teachers Union has fought back."