Catalyst Chicago

Twenty-eight years ago this month, then-U.S. Secretary of Education William Bennett came to town for a closed-door meeting with Chicago United, a business coalition deeply involved in the push for reform of the Chicago Public Schools.

While meeting with the press afterwards, Bennett raised some local hackles by offering a harsh assessment of the situation: “You’ve got close to educational meltdown here in Chicago. Is there a worse case? You tell me.”