Church Groups Getting Public Money

Here’s something:

Faith-based groups that have become the face of community support for Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s controversial plans to lengthen the school day and close failing schools also receive millions of dollars in grants from his administration.

One of the key players touting grass-roots support for Emanuel’s agenda is the Rev. Roosevelt Watkins, a minister and longtime ally of former Mayor Richard Daley who has seen an uninterrupted flow of contracts to provide services to Chicago Public Schools students. …

A roughly one-month, $1 million contract was awarded for this spring to three groups, including HOPE, for a program designed to keep children off the street during school breaks. In June, Emanuel’s then-newly appointed schools CEO, Jean-Claude Brizard, lauded the Safe Haven, Safe Summer program, which the district said involved about 100 churches.In July, Watkins’ group was among 10 community organizations that collectively received a one-year, $6.3 million Safe Passage contract to watch over children going to and from school and to defuse potential conflict, according to public records.

via Chicago Tribune.

If CPS is giving all this money away to religious groups for after school programs then there should be no problem moving to a voucher system and giving CPS money away for during school programs.

This could be the birth of a nice school choice program for the city.

Worst Schools Ever

Six of every 10 Illinois public schools failed to meet federal test targets this year and risk federal sanctions as a result, according to information released Thursday by the Illinois State Board of Education.

High schools fared the worst.

Statewide, 656 of the 666 public high schools fell short of the proficiency standard on math and reading tests that students take every spring. Only eight high schools where students take the exam in 11th grade met federal standards. Two more high schools made it based on participation and student performance on other state exams.

via The Chicago Tribune.

I guess this is why the teacher’s union doesn’t want merit pay for teachers.  It appears most are failing miserably.

I’ve recently had a fairly heated email exchange with a family member, and former public school teacher, about the standard by which teachers should be measured.  Of course, the teachers’ union’s position is that it is completely unfair to measure teacher performance at all.  This is at the root of our problem.


If we keep going down the current path and Illinois will become a wasteland.

But if we make teachers AND PARENTS responsible for the education of their students and things will improve.  I’ve written up a pretty basic plan that I will share with everyone one say soon.