Teachers say the new PARCC is an improvement over the previous Illinois state tests, but they want more time to prep for it and say not all of their students are ready for its level of academic challenge.
Nearly 46 percent of Chicago public school students identify as Hispanic this year, and district leaders say it’s necessary to make the study of Latino history and culture a core part of education. CPS plans to sell the new curriculum to other districts, and is launching it a year after an African American Studies curriculum made its debut. Experts say no other school system has made such an expansive effort to incorporate ethnic studies into the school day.
The U.S. Department of Education announced today that the state will receive an additional $20 million in annual federal funding to further expand preschool services for 4-year-olds.
A new study on Chicago’s child-parent centers found that children attending a full day of preschool do even better on a range of kindergarten readiness assessments than those who attend preschool for just part of the day.
To give the neediest children a better shot at high-quality early learning opportunities, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has made preschool expansion a focal point of his agenda. Early learning advocates laud the mayor for his plans, but still wonder if the city can reach its ambitious goal.
As it seeks a major federal grant to expand preschool, Illinois officials submit a bid that promises to double the state’s investment in early learning—despite the state’s ongoing and massive fiscal problems and a downward trend in early education funding in recent years.
Child-parent centers that enroll children from preschool through third grade and require parental participation have been proven to have long-term academic benefits for children. To expand them, Chicago plans to borrow millions of dollars through a so-called “social impact bond” that pays back investors if children reach certain achievement benchmarks.
During a panel discussion with a group of teachers from a broad range of Chicago schools, the overuse of standardized testing during class time and the detrimental impact on student learning emerged as a major topic.
As New York City rolls out an ambitious plan to offer free full-day prekindergarten for tens of thousands of 4-year-olds this fall, community activists and union members in Chicago say it’s time for universal early childhood education and child care in the Windy City.
A new promotion policy has led to a 29-percent decline in summer school enrollment in Chicago, but officials say students who would have gone to summer school under the old policy will still get targeted academic help next year.