Raise Your Hand challenges CPS 'underutilization' and 'overcrowding' numbers

On Monday, December 3, 2012, Raise Your Hand released its second "Apples to Apples" data report questioning how CPS calculates space utilization. Parent Jeanne Marie Olson discovered that CPS uses a formula that allows for a range of 24-36 kids per classroom in its "efficient" category. RYH believes that CPS over-reported under-utilization in 2011-2012 by 24% and under-reported overcrowded CPS buildings.

How Jeanne got to these numbers:

CPS released its new space utilization data yesterday:

CPS is still using the same formula as in SY2011-12 and thus we have many questions about the numbers that CPS is reporting. With the current CPS formula, a school with 14 homerooms can have every homeroom in use with 24 students in 13 of homerooms, 1 room with 21 students and still be labeled as an "underutilized" school. The same school could also have 35 students in every homeroom and not be considered overcrowded.

This is not in alignment with the CPS classroom limits of 28 students (grades K-3) and 31 students (grades 4-8) that have been presented in CPS SY2013 Budget Guidelines and the CPS Policies Sec. 301.2 With this space utilization formula in use by CPS, principals are forced to give up special education, art, and music rooms to create more homeroom space, or hold classes in auditoriums or gyms in order to maintain the class size limits when school enrollment approaches the upper limits of the "efficiency range".



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