A LIST competition expands and grows more intense as Substance broadens criteria for the award... 'Not all Network Chiefs are A_______ -- just the majority'

Within two days after Substance published the first of our monthly recognitions of self-important semi-competents at the top levels of administrative power in CPS, the A LIST, we began hearing that we had been unfair . . .

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Network Chief Liz Kirby (left) testified against Gresham school at the show trial

Testimony against 'Turnaround' of Dvorak

[Editor's Note: The following is the complete testimony prepared and presented to the hearing on the proposed "Turnaround" of Chicago's Dvorak elementary school. Additional material pertaining to the failures of AUSL's so-called "turnaround" work is . . .

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Part of the crowd at the April 9, 2014 hearings on the turnaround of Dvorak. Substance photo by Jean Schwab.

BOARDWATCH: 'All advance registration speaker slots are filled...' nine days before the Board of Education meeting even begins, Rahm's Board members continue attack on democracy and decency

It was a full nine days until the April 23, 2014 meeting of the Chicago Board of Education, but when I went to the sign in screens at cps.edu on April 14, 2014, the registration . . .

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Since she was appointed a member of the Chicago Board of Education by Mayor Rahm Emanuel in May 2011, Andrea Zopp, who is CEO of the Chicago Urban League, has voted to destroy more schools in Chicago's Black Community and destroy the jobs of more working people (teachers, custodians and others) in Chicago's Black Community than any person in the more than 100-year history of the Urban League. Because of the corporate structure of the current Chicago Urban League, no one is Black Chicago is allowed to criticize her regular votes to close public schools in the Black Community (most dramatically, on May 22, 2013) or to privatize decent union jobs, mostly held by Black women and men (most recently, the privatization of custodial workers in 2014). At the March 2014 meeting of the Board, sfter numerous critics challenged the Board's version of school and community reality, Zopp proclaimed that the speaker had been wrong and that, speaking as a Board member: WE KNOW THE TRUTH. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt.

TURNAROUND WORLD: In CPS turnaround world, 2 + 2 equals 6, or 66, or WTF as Babara Byrd Bennett and Rahm's minions vote to do whatever they want, and 'independent hearing officers' can remain on the gravy train for two decades -- as long as they rubber stamp what CPS wants

As students of CPS history know, the first hearings on "reconstitution" (now called "turnaround" but legally still "reconstitution") were held back in 1997 -- nearly two decades ago -- and the first hearing officer to . . .

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Hearing officer Frederick Bates orders security to remove protesters from the podium during the hearing on the proposed

'Chief' Saegert tops 'A LIST' for April 2014... Micro managing classroom instruction while still learning her way around her new home city, Rhonda Saegert brings crazed bureaucratization of teaching the little ones to a new gritty peak of inanity

The competition was still for the first monthly "A LIST" award to CPS bureaucrats, but after reviewing the entries for April 2014, the judges found that Rhonda Saegert, the "Chief" for "Network 10," had won . . .

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One of the questions Alderman Matt O'Shea probably doesn't ask Chicago

Labor Notes conference was a big success... On privatization of public services -- 'Before you can destroy it, and move in for the kill, you have to undermine it and degrade it.'

Speech excerpts from the Friday evening and Saturday morning plenaries of the April 4-6, 2014 Labor Notes Conference in Chicago are now available in a Labor Notes video. And before the speeches begin, a . . .

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Gresham challenges 'turnaround' verdict

More than 100 (three bus loads and others) determined, angry, community members, staff and students of Gresham Elementary School attended the hearing on the turnaround of Gresham Elementary School. The Gresham school community is telling . . .

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Above, the principal of Gresham Elementary School and Operation PUSH's Jonathan Jackson challenged the legitimacy of the hearing on the proposed

Data-- The Devil is in the Overview AND the Details

Elsewhere [and see below], I've deconstructed Arne Duncan's presentation of the 2015 Education Budget to the House Subcommittee on Appropriations. Here, I bring notice to the phraseology Duncan uses to present the numbers. . . . .

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Huge outpouring of opposition to 'turnaround' at Dvorak Elementary School

Angry parents, staff, community members and students greeted Chicago Public Schools officials at the hearing on the proposed reconstitution of Dvorak School of Technology, on Wednesday, April 9, 2014. at 125 North Clark. The hearing . . .

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Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis spoke against the proposal to

Arne Duncan comes out publicly against Common Core... Duncan tells Congress 'I'm just a big proponent of high standards. Whether they're common or not is sort of secondary...'

Has the U.S. Secretary of Education whose two signature policies have been "Race To The Top" and "Common Core" changed his mind? In two days in April 2014, it began to sound like Arne Duncan . . .

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Has U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan come out in opposition to Common Core?

MEDIA WATCH: 'Chicagoland makes a kind of neoliberal action hero out of Rahm Emanuel...' Black Agenda Report takes on the crude propaganda of 'Chicagoland'... CNN's Chicagoland: An 8 Part Miniseries Campaign Commercial For Rahm Emanuel and Urban Neoliberalism

[Editor's Note: I know that it was a British Prime Minister at the height of the racism of the British Raj and the Empire who proclaimed "There are lies, damned lies, and statistics..." But for . . .

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Hollywood propaganda for Rahm Emanuel's bid to be the Democratic Party's vice presidential candidate?

CPS launches massive privatization of custodial work during Spring Break... 'Rest assured that any new employees will be trained on Aramark’s world-class cleaning standards. The program is rigorous, and you should have every expectation it will deliver immediate results...'

The massive continuation of privatization of CPS custodial services under contract with Aramark corporate is being pushed with fiercesome speed by CPS officials. On April 8, 2014, CPS principals received the following email from Aramark . . .

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Caught in the CPS 'Matrix', schools facing threat of turnaround can't figure out what the rules are

For more than a decade, Chicago mayors and school officials have proudly proclaimed that their strategy of "turnaround" for so-called "failing" schools was just what was needed to promote true education reform for the nation's . . .

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MEDIA WATCH: Opt Out news begins to hit 'mainstream' of corporate media as New York opt outs reach at least 33,000 as testing season begins

Diane Ravitch notes: "Preliminary figures indicate that at least 33,000 students opted out of state tests in New York. This is a huge increase from last year, when only a few hundred students refused to . . .

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Drones and teacher unions... How far willthe AFT and NEA go in supporting Common Core?

[Editor's Note: Susan Ohanian's recent report -- “On 21st Century Drones, Destroyers and Teachers” compares the collaboration of the leaders of the National Education Association and the American Federation of Teachers with the national expansion . . .

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The USS Zumwalt.

Philadelphia tries 'portfolio model' treating schools as if they were stock holdings... Just as Chicago dumps the notion and fires its 'Chief Portfolio Officer'!

It's been more than a year since the disappearance of Chicago's "Chief Portfolio Officer" and an end to that bit of corporate terminology, it was something of a surprise that Philadelphia has been adopting the . . .

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Philadelphia school chiefs proudly describe corporate 'Portfolio' model at AERA... 'The great example of portfolio is in New Orleans... New Orleans after Katrina went almost completely to a portfolio system. Almost all of the schools in New Orleans are charters now...'

The leaders of Philadelphia's public schools, which have been under a corporate dictatorship for more than a decade, proudly described the "portfolio model" for managing the city's public school buildings at the annual meeting of . . .

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Philadelphia's controversial schools chief William Hite.

'After 12 years of No Child Left Behind, we know that ratcheting up high stakes testing does little to close achievement gaps...' Arguments for Common Core don't stand up to scrutiny

The implementation of Common Core State Standards (CCSS) represents the most grand curriculum experiment in educational history with the least amount of evidence to back it up. Even so, Common Core enthusiasts often ridicule detractors . . .

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Arne Duncan's lies cannot hold back the tide of Opt Out during the 2014 testing season, or the critiques of Common Core.

OPT OUT FREAK OUTS: Michelle Rhee gets free space in The Washington Post to preach against the Opt Out movement... Anyone for reducing Amazon's business now that Bezos owns the Washington Post?

Without having offered any of the major spokesmen and women of the growing national Opt Out movement an inch, the Washington Post newspapers, now owned by Amazon billionaire Jeff Bezos, have given a major space . . .

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Michelle Rhee's time as chancellor of the D.C. public schools was marked by scandals, including major test corruption, but the ruling class gave Rhee a pass.

Common Core content decried as more and more examples become available from various places in the USA

Now that the Common Core is being implemented, even in a test phase, across the United States, teachers, principals and school administrators are finally getting a close look at the actual content of the tests. . . .

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