The essential traits of a positive school climate

The single most important job of the principal is creating a school environment where students feel safe, supported, engaged, and accepted, according to many child development and school leadership experts.

The reason?

Children who are afraid of bullying or fights have less bandwidth for learning. Negative emotions, such as feeling alienated or misunderstood, make it harder for the brain to process information and to learn...

Closer to Home

Key Findings

  • Pre-policy, enrollment rates in any CPS pre-k was higher for students who lived closer to schools with pre-k and had more pre-k classrooms near where they lived.
  • Pre-policy, the associations of likelihood of enrollment in full-day pre-k with 1) distance to a school with a full-day pre-k classroom, and 2) number of full-day pre-k classrooms close to home were strongest for

Analysis: Time to view a first language not as a barrier but as an asset for English Learners & celebrate their bilingual successes

In the United States, bilingual education in schools has been an afterthought for decades. But demographic changes in the student population, and new research out of Chicago, demand that it occupy a more meaningful role in how we measure success in serving these students, as well as other groups of learners. Today, as a policy analyst with decades of experience, I am encouraging a new approach to accountability that places a value on bilingual skills.

Welcome to high school in pandemic times

It wasn’t supposed to start like this.

The 13- and 14-year-olds who make up the Class of 2024 did not expect to begin their high school careers clustered in Zoom rooms or passing temperature checks and shuffling past masked classmates at a safe distance.

The pandemic has rewritten the script of a traditional rite of passage — the beginning of the end of a long K-12 journey for students growing into young adulthood...

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