The Paul Vallas "education miracle" is a hoax, whether in Chicago, Philadelphia, New Orleans or Bridgeport

As Paul Vallas makes his case for becoming mayor of Chicago in the February 2019 election, mainstream media news coverage continues to repeat easily refuted lies of his success as a school reformer. Chicago reporters assert or repeat Vallas' claims of his "nationally recognized record of success" as fact, as did Fran Spielman in her recent piece in the Chicago Sun-Times on Vallas' education plans.

Vallas' education plans are "in his wheelhouse," Spielman asserts. But as veteran Chicago public school teachers and seasoned observers know, despite the hype of reform and repeated claims, during his 1995-2001 tenure as CEO, Vallas severely damaged Chicago schools.

Substance will be re-publishing some of our articles on Vallas, as they're more relevant than ever. In addition, we'll publish others' work showing the damage he did to schools in their cities.

For example, the November 2018 edition of the New Orleans Tribune's editorial says the schools are worse because of the Vallas-led reforms:

Here we are more than 13 years after Hurricane Katrina, more than 12 years after the takeover of public education and the littering of our local educational landscape with charter management organizations like flies at a crawfish boil under the guise of reform and improvement, and the vast majority of our schools are just fair mediocre, average, so-so…or worse.

The Vallas-led New Orleans "reform school district" takeover was a farce of the ruling class, the editorial asserts:

The story of the failing, poor-performing Orleans Parish School System that needed to be dismantled was just that—a story, a fairytale spun and twisted to make way for those who wanted to profit from the disaster that beset our community and even worse, those intent on profiting from our children at the expense of their education. So here we are in November 2018, and the only thing our schools need to recover from is the last 13 years of so-called education reform.


December 2, 2018 at 3:59 PM

By: Jim Vail


This Vallas guy is the perfect snake oil salesman. His revisionism revealed at the forum stated he saved the public schools in Philadelphia, and the unions endorse his candidacy. He is quite simply the savior.

The fact is, we got Rauner because the democrats decided he should be put on the opposite ticket of the Republican, giving voters no real choice when it came to supporting public education and unions.

December 23, 2018 at 12:53 AM

By: Theresa D. Daniels

The Shock Doctrine -- important book to read

Readers can put the DEform of education actions by Paul Vallas into a larger context by reading The Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein which brilliantly explicates how opportunists like Vallas will use a disaster like Katrina as a cover for the destruction of public education and the firing of veteran teachers.

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