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Illinois Blog

Great event next week for Chicago parents


As the college search process gets underway for a number of Chicago families, I know that many of our members find it frustrating to gather information and resources as they look beyond high school graduation. College tuition, educational opportunities, resources for new college students? It all adds up, and it can make your head spin!

Our Kids Aren’t “Failing”


The results are in… sort of. The Illinois State Board of Education released the initial statewide results of the PARCC tests at its board meeting yesterday.

IL Releases Initial PARCC Data


Today, the Illinois State Board of Education announced the preliminary statewide results of PARCC, the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers. The new state assessment measures whether students are learning the math and English Language Arts skills they will need to prepare them for college and career success. 

Back-to-School Tips for Stress-Free Mornings


With Chicago Public Schools students reporting for their first day of classes today, many parents are confronting the challenge of adjusting to a new school year. New classrooms, new teachers, new friends, and for some students, new schools. It’s a lot for a student to take in, and it’s a lot for their families to take in as well.

Another Voice for Funding Equity


“Illinois is a patchwork of have and have-not districts. Rich districts pump out highly educated, college-ready students. Poor districts decay. Poverty persists.”

Stand Celebrates Reading Successes


Summer time is prime reading season, not just for kids on summer break but vacationers and beach goers alike. It can also be the time when folks take it easy and activities like reading get put on the back burner in lieu of enjoying a nice Chicago summer day spent outside.

Stand for Children Illinois recently celebrated the students who participated in our Summer Reading Challenge. In its first year, the program aimed to limit summer learning loss by keeping students engaged with books and activities meant to spur creativity and bring the stories alive.

Reauthorization of ESEA Progresses but Accountability is Lacking


Today’s Chicago Tribune shines another light on education news, this time with an editorial outlining the shortcomings of recently passed bills to overhaul the No Child Left Behind law. Both the U.S. House and Senate versions that passed those chambers – the Student Success Act and Every Child Achieves Act, respectively – “continue statewide testing regimens that break out results among students by race, income and special needs,” the editorial noted.

One area that is not included in either bill? Accountability for schools that repeatedly fail to educate students.

Special Needs Students Set to be Hurt in CPS Budget Cuts


Chicago’s most vulnerable students are set to lose out in the ongoing Chicago Public Schools budget crunch. Facing a massive budget deficit, CPS “says it can save about $42 million by modifying services for the roughly 50,000 special needs students it serves,” according to a report in today’s Chicago Tribune.

Stand Parent: Attacks Won’t Save CPS


Michael Butz, a Stand for Children Illinois parent leader, had a letter to the editor published recently in the Chicago Tribune, noting that personal attacks will not do anything to help Chicago students or resolve the distressing budget situation.

Tell Springfield: Protect Chicago Students!


Yesterday, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) outlined a plan that would cut $200 million in funding for our schools next year. This is a direct result of the Illinois budget impasse, which continues to fester. Chicago is particularly harmed, because it must pay pension costs that other schools have covered by the state. It is vital that our legislators in Springfield hear from us, their constituents and supporters of strong and fair education funding.