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Chicago: A "Moratorium" That's Really A Bloodbath

Yet again, I fear, comes a somewhat cockamamie (sp?) proposal out of Chicago's executive suites and the CPS central offices.

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Fearing that it would be denied an extension on the timeline for annual school closings it recently asked state lawmakers to consider -- or, even worse, a shutdown of annual school closings that it says it needs to get rid of 100,000 empty seats and 140 half-empty buildings -- Mayor Emanuel and the district announced a pro-active "moratorium" on closings -- starting next year.  

But the proposal raised as many fears as it quelled, presented in the usual governmentspeak and suggesting that the city would try and do all of the closings it needed to do before the end of this school year -- a massive single-year endeavor.  Previously, 5-10 schools a year have been closed (in addition to turnarounds, restructuring, and all of that).  

See below for links galore.  See District299.com or @district299 for minute by minute updates.

After this year, Chicago schools could be safe from closure for 5 years WBEZ:  A five-year moratorium after this year may only serve to soften the blow that could be large-scale school closings at the end of this school year. Rumors have been swirling for months that dozens of schools will be shut down—anywhere between 80 and 120.

CPS: School closures could halt after this round Catalyst: If the extension bill gets the support of Martinez and Soto, it likely it will be approved. However, Martinez said that there will probably be many amendments to the bill that put more stipulations on CPS, such as requiring that students in targeted schools get to apply to magnet, selective enrollments and charter schools once the decisions are announced.

CPS offer escalates school closing fears Tribune: House Majority Leader Barbara Flynn Currie, who is sponsoring the bill to push back the school closing announcement, said it will be taken up in the House Executive Committee on Tuesday, the first day of the fall session. Byrd-Bennett also plans to be there to lobby lawmakers.

Chicago proposes moratorium on school closings after 2013 Reuters: Chicago now has 103 charter or "contract" schools, some run by philanthropists, which account for 12 percent of students. There are plans by supporters for 60 more charter schools over the next five years, according to the district and the union.

Byrd-Bennett proposes 5-year ban on CPS closures after this year Sun Times: Chicago Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett Monday announced plans to try to “right-size” a district with about 100,000 excess seats by fall and then declare a five-year moratorium on school closures. The plan is contingent on the Legislature allowing the district to extend its deadline for producing a proposed school action list from Dec. 1 to Mar. 31, Byrd-Bennett told the City Club in prepared remarks.

Byrd-Bennett answers questions from the media PAWJB: Bennett said there is no specific number now as to the number of schools they want to close. The plans for charter schools don’t enter into these utilization plans, she said. A nine member commission will make recommendations on March 31, 2013, if the proposed legislation is passed this week, for CPS closings, then there will be a five year moratorium on further closings.

Fake Offer In A Zero-Trust Climate Tim Furman: The facilities law is designed to protect people from the instability of CPS upper management, not facilitate it. Legislators should ask BBB to name even ten schools she's in charge of and then laugh her out of the room, politely.

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