Thursday, December 26, 2013

UNO Webinar, Charter Forum: Chicago Ed Policy in January

I'll be "off the grid" for the next few days, to use a tired expression. This was supposed to be the vacation where I read The Autobiography of Mark Twain. Instead, I've been immersed in Turkish history, including Balci's luminous discussion of the Nurcu movement in Central Asia. It's all very interesting but I have a feeling I'll get enough of this topic in January.

Speaking of January, don't forget about these two spectacular ed policy events being co-hosted by RPNPS. The first is a webinar on January 9, at 7 PM.  Byron Sigcho will present his comprehensive review of the UNO financial and pedagogical model, updated with the latest developments. Just because UNO is laying low doesn't mean they're going away--- their whole financial model depends on building, building, and more building.  It's a really, really interesting topic. Register for the UNO webinar here.  It's free.

Then on January 14, 2014, we'll be co-hosting (with many of Chicago's finest community groups) a forum on the impact of charter expansion in Chicago. Remember, we're living in a city where they just closed down 50 schools for "underutilization," where the CEO goes on at length about a budget crisis, and yet their plan is to open as many as 31 new charter schools in the next two years.

In a functioning democracy, these people would be recalled and indicted for malfeasance. It's as if the entire ruling class of a major city has lost its mind.

This will be an excellent forum; we'll provide summaries of the latest research on charter schools, as well as detailed description of how each and every one of these schools reduces the funding/programming available at neighborhood schools. And some of these charters --- the ones approved by the ALEC-designed, undemocratic, and bizarrely funded state charter commission-- take a much bigger chunk than others. Then we'll make an action plan for the future.

There is no registration! Come as you are.  January 14, 6:30 PM at Shields Middle School,  2611 W. 48th Street, Chicago.

Many people around the city and around the world already know that we're also going to be moving forward in January with extensive work on the Gulen issue; I can only advise you to stay tuned for more information. Meanwhile, review the Sun-Times piece, do some research, bring yourself up to speed, and brace yourself for a tsunami of disinformation coming from the Movement. 

And now, I'm unplugging the router. 

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