Obstacle course

First, the good news: Students at once-mired Chicago Public Schools are graduating and heading to college at a record clip. After a decade of steady gains, research shows the results for CPS are now in line with peer school districts around the country and within arm's length of national averages.

The same isn't true once the students reach college. Far too few make it through to graduation...

For CPS, no time to celebrate academic gains

Chicago has rightly received praise for its nation-leading gains. Students in Chicago Public Schools grew academically at a faster rate than 96 percent of districts nationwide in recent years. High school graduation rates are higher than they've ever been. And more CPS graduates enroll in college and earn a sheepskin than ever before—all of this anchored by a strong district leader.

That's worth celebrating. But there's worrisome news to tamp the confetti...

Do Classroom Environments Matter for Noncognitive Aspects of Student Performance and Students' Course Grades?

An interdisciplinary team of University of Chicago Consortium on School Research (UChicago Consortium) researchers designed the Becoming Effective Learners Student Survey (BEL-S) to illuminate relationships among important student, classroom/instructional, and academic outcome variables.

Art imitating life

BENTON HARBOR — Poverty and race and the impact they have on education will be explored in November when Lake Michigan College puts on a play about a fictional Chicago high school that is facing closure at the end of the school year.

“Exit Strategy,” written by Chicago playwright Ike Holter, was first performed in May 2014 at Jackalope Theater in Chicago – a year after the Chicago School Board voted to close 49 elementary schools and one high school...

Ten Criteria for Describing and Selecting SEL Frameworks

The AWG’s series of framework briefs is designed to help practitioners better understand and grapple with the challenges and opportunities multiple SEL frameworks can present. This is the third in an introductory series of three briefs, designed to answer the research questions.  All the briefs are intended to support systems, schools, and community organizations as well as individual practitioners’ working to advance their SEL efforts and improve youth’s intra- and inter-personal social and emotional competencies.

Which admissions process is tougher: CPS selective enrollment high school, or college?

If you’re the parent of a CPS middle school student, you’ve already heard the rumor: It’s tougher to get your kids into a public selective enrollment high school than it is to get them into a good college.

It’s a thorny bit of folk wisdom that has been hammered into the collective, worried consciousness of Chicago parents for years. It’s so well known, suburban friends can recite chapter and verse: Boy, are they thankful they decided to leave the city and raise kids where high school is a foregone conclusion, not a rat race! Phew!

That C in algebra isn't just about students' math abilities, it's about classroom environment, too

As a new sixth-grade teacher in Chicago Public Schools, I created an “A’s and B’s Because I Tried” Club to recognize every student who achieved a top grade on a project. I had come to my classroom in 2004 the same way most teachers do: with an unwavering belief that students can achieve academically, with the goal of creating a classroom where every student felt valued and with the confidence that, if students tried hard enough, they would succeed.

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