language="javascript" src="assets/javascript/scripts.js"> Substance News

Planning for mayoral race against Rahm Emanuel... 'Conversations with Karen' move across Chicago as school year begins

The 'Conversations with Karen' featuring Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis's conversations with people across Chicago continued as school began in September. A major event is scheduled in the city's Uptown community September 30. Lewis . . .

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Conversations with Karen will continue in Uptown September 30. Nominating petitions are being circulated and a campaign fund has been opened.

Crazy Cawley quote sums up CPS executives' cluelessness -- 'Let’s not focus on the number of custodians you get; let’s focus on the work that needs to be done...' Principals document Aramark thefts, incompetence, and confusion as CPS continues to push expensive re-privatization contract

As the extent of the scandals involving the massive (more than $300 million) "re-privatization" contracts with Aramark and Sodexo-MAGIC continue to become public across Chicago, the Board of Education members who voted without discussion or . . .

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First page of the Board Report of February 26, 2014 awarding the 're-privatization' contract to Aramark.

New Orleans schools have not become a 'model for the nation.' Instead, New Orleans stands as an example of brutal corporate attacks on public education and the deep racist roots of corporate 'school reform' since the days when Paul Vallas was overseer of the New Orleans plantation

Between the Illinois race for governor and some national reporting on the opening of school, the brutal destruction of the public schools of New Orleans following the August 2005 assault on the city by Hurricane . . .

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Much of the research since the 2006 publication of the AFT-UTNO report has proved that the racist destruction of democracy and public schools in New Orleans following Hurricane Katrina (August 2005) has elaborated on what the AFT found two years after Katrina. One facet of the history is that CORE studied the racism of Arne Duncan and others as part of its early organizing. Studying Naomi Klein's

'A school that could start out clean on Monday by Friday, if things haven’t been done, is really almost a pig sty.'... Piss on the floors and poo on the walls dramatize the lies of Tim Cawley's Aaramark Power Point

It's less than six months since David Vitale and the members of the Chicago Board of Education sat smiling benignly while "Chief Administrative Officer Tim Cawley presented the Board will his $300 million proposal . . .

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COMMON CORE... Follow the money to the Common Core's 'policy entrepreneurs...' With the Help of the US DOE, Policy Entrepreneurs Used Business Roundtable Toolkit Tactic to Hornswaggle the States on Common Core

The old saying goes that school curriculum is the only thing harder to move than a graveyard. The implementation of the Common Core seems to disprove this point. The politics involved is outlined below. The . . .

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David Coleman of the College Board and Common Core...

Logan Square parties for neighborhood schools, withstands downpour, and celebrates Karen Lewis’ anticipated run for Mayor of Chicago

Everyone “knows” that Latinos don’t care about education. Yet anyone who thinks that Latinos don’t care about education hasn’t met LSNA (Logan Square Neighborhood Association) and its’ supporters in the Logan Square neighborhood on the . . .

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Children and teenagers from all of the schools in the Logan Square community gathered at the monument at the center of the community with signs showing how much Rahm Emanuel's Board of Education has robbed from their schools this year. The crowd assembled at

CPS begins demolition of Lincoln Playground

The demolition of Lincoln Elementary School’s playground began today, Friday, September 5, 2014, destroying 11 trees thus far and dismantling the playground equipment. Neighbors assume they will tear down the last three established -- nearly . . .

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Massive expansion of charter schools pushed out all the teachers the children needed most!... New Orleans' 'miracle' is really a story of racism and hypocrisy

It's been a full nine years since the world was shocked as the most powerful hurricane ever to hit the Gulf Coast of the United States created a terrifying disaster for much of the region . . .

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Dr. Reynard Sanders. Substance photo by Jean Schwab.

Voting for Patrick Quinn or Bruce Rauner in Illinois: A Lose-Lose Scenario

Are we going to continue our connivance with the corrupt political system of Illinois where public employee unions can endorse a governor who does not care about breaking a constitutional contract with retirees and public . . .

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Illinois Governor Pat Quinn has been betraying the teachers' pensions for more than four years, since he agreed without checking with former Chicago Schools CEO Ron Huberman that Chicago needed a $1.2 billion

RAHMWATCH, BASEBALL... Rahm tries another publicity stunt on Park District baseball while park playing fields remain mud puddles and public school fields are locked to keep kids from 'damaging' the surfaces

While the majority of the baseball fields in Chicago Park District parks remain mud puddles even after a heavy dew overnight, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel continued on September 4, 2014 to try and milk what . . .

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What do the data really show? Charter schools have failed in Chicago!... Chicago's 'underperforming' charter schools

[Editor's Note: The article below picks up the essay published on line -- but NOT in print -- in the Chicago Sun-Times by Troy M. LaRaviere, principal of Blaine Elementary School in Chicago. Although the . . .

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Blaine Elementary School Principal Troy LaRaviere has been speaking out against the Chicago Board of Education's attacks on local schools and the city's real public schools.

MEDIA WATCH: The Sun-Times never actually printed the LaRaviere analysis showing Chicago's turnarounds and charters were underperforming... Just left it on the Website

This morning (September 4, 2014), the blogger Diane Ravitch noted that the Chicago Tribune has not published Troy LaRaviere's analysis showing that Chicago's charter and turnarounds schools have failed when compared with the city's real . . .

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Union members and supporters picketed the Chicago Sun-Times's new offices in the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza after the newspaper's new owners, led by Michael Ferro Jr., a friend of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, fired all of the newspaper's photojournalists. The Sun-Times has been reorganized into an Internet property which Ferro was reported to be hoping to flip at a profit.

LABOR BEAT: Union leader warns against single person crews on trains

During the Pullman Labor Day events in Chicago, peopled learned about the danger of single person train crews. You can now access a video On YouTube at: There is a proposal currently being pushed . . .

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One of the many photos of the disaster at Lac Magentic Quebec in 2013 illustrating the danger of one-person freight train crews.

Karen Lewis to speak in Logan Square this Friday...'a rally calling for an investment in neighborhood schools and an elected school board...'

Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis will join Northwest Side residents to mark the opening of school on Friday, September 5, 2014. The event on Friday begins from four to five p.m. at the Logan . . .

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site of the party to be held on Friday September 5, 2014.

Absurdities of computer-graded 'writing' exposed by BABEL

[While a great deal of blogging is kin to the selfie -- all opinion and no reporting with little fact. That is not true, however, about several blogs devoted to education, and one of the . . .

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MIT's Les Perelman (left) with students. Perelman invented BABEL to

'New' Labor Beat video... '... dissects the way mainstream politicians (Rudolph Giuliani, Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, George Bush Sr.), conservative intellectuals and the corporate media conspired to demonize inner city neighborhoods and their residents. ..'

"Demonizing the Inner City: Ideology and the Urban Poor" in now available in a restored format On YouTube at: and from Labor Beat. In light of current events and recent history, the story is . . .

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Labor Beat photo.

MEDIA WATCH: A Once-Respected Education Journal Goes Rah Rah for Whatever Bill Wants... How Eli Broad and Bill Gates compromised the integrity of the Phi Delta Kappan

Whatever Bill Gates wants,
Bill Gates gets.
And America,
Bill Gates wants your kid.

Recline yourself, resign yourself,
you're through.
He always gets what he pays for.
And kids' heart'n . . .

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The cover of the September 2014 issue of the Phi Delta Kappan obscures the fact that the lead article, an apologetic for Common Core, was authored by employees of the foundations that are paid to tout Common Core. The decline of the PDK over the past eight years has been dramatic and saddening to many who once relied on it for serious discussion of public education, since it has now become an advertisement for the policies brought to the public behind the smokescreens of PDK and elsewhere based on money from billionaires like Eli Broad and Bill Gates.

MEDIA WATCH: Is America finally learning to reject Chicago's 'education' experts? Connecticut rids itself of AUSL's Terrence Carter a few months after ejecting Paul G. Vallas

Before we review the final chapter in the fraudulent career of "doctor" Terrence Carter, who almost got to be the superintendent of the New London, Connecticut public schools, people in Chicago should ask themselves why . . .

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The 20-page report from the law firm hired by the New London Connecticut school board to check on the media accusations of fraud (claiming a PhD he didn't have) and plagiarism against Chicago's Terrence Carter was an expensive lesson that needs to be re-learned by every school district from Reno Nevada and Madison Wisconsin to New Bedford and Sarasota that have recently hired Chicago's non-teaching

Know your enemies department... Resistance has grown enormously since the Septembers of 'Waiting for Superman' and 'Won't Back Down.' But the attacks on public education continue behind a phalanx of plutocratic billions of dollars and sanctimonious astroturf groups and some Hollywood propaganda

As the 2014 - 2015 school year begins, the spread of the Resistance to the reign of corporate school reform (of which high-stakes corporate testings and single-measure "metrics" of schools' and children's success reign) has . . .

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The melodramatic poster advertising the onset of

'What are called a 'public schools' in many of America’s wealthy communities aren’t really 'public' at all. In effect, they’re private schools, whose tuition is hidden in the purchase price of upscale homes, and in the corresponding property taxes....' Inequality welcomes children and teachers back

[Editor's Note: The following was posted as "Back to School, and to Widening Inequality" by Robert Reich, August 25, 2014 on Robert Reich's blog. Reich served as Labor Secretary under Bill Clinton but has been . . .

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Between January and March 2013, more than 20,000 Chicago teachers, parents, students and community leaders protested and spoke out at hearings and Board of Education meetings against Mayor Rahm Emanuel's plans to close public schools. One of the most dramatic protests took place with a sit-in at Chicago's City Hall (above) against Emanuel's proposals. Despite the overwhelming public opposition to the closings, Emanuel's hand-picked Board of Education members voted on May 22, 2013 to close 50 of the city's public schools. That was the largest number of public school closings anywhere in history.