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Report Card for CPS Not So Hot

By Margaret Lyons in News on Oct 31, 2007 5:04PM

Yesterday was Principal for a Day, er, day at Chicago Public Schools, and over 1,600 business leaders, politicians and other bigwigs— including 27 aldermen, five players from the Bears, 30 people from JP Morgan Chase, 71 people from Merrill Lynch, and a bunch of White Castle execs—participated. It's a weird, weird list that you can download from District 299, our go-to CPS blog.

2007_10_31.cps1.jpgBut CPS has issues that can't be solved with Charles Tillman's suggestion to "make learning fun." The achievement gap on state tests and on the ACT between white and minority CPS students is growing: Between 2003 and 2007, white students' reading scores improved while black and Latino students' scores declined. Improvement in white students' scores can be chalked up to higher-achieving students entering CPS in the first place--according to the Sun-Times, incoming freshmen are scoring better now than five years ago.

But that's not the only achievement gap in play.Girls outperform boys "every state achievement exam," on some tests by as much as 18 percentage points. And there are 35 CPS schools that graduate less than 60 percent of their students.

Luckily, the district just spent $1.8 million on social networking software.

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