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Education Spring Updates

The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) will determine the future of public education in America, and the Forum has consistently been entrenched in assisting the Illinois state plan by suggesting recommendations and advocating for English Learners and Latino families so they have equitable access to high quality education.

The Forum’s education team was invited by the Chicago Public Schools’ Bilingual Parent Advisory Council to present on ESSA and school accountability to over 300 parents at several elementary schools across Chicagoland. The workshops featured live polling on a variety of questions and concerns regarding school ratings and evaluations. Thirteen different languages were spoken among participating parents.


Image: Parents listening to Rebecca Vonderlack-Navarro, Associate Manager Education Policy, presentation about ESSA 

Image: Karen Garibay-Mulattieri, Manager of Education Policy and Research, discussing ESSA at a Chicagoland elementary school

The education team also convened local and national partners to explore the implications of accountability under ESSA on schools that serve large immigrant and English Learner populations. Partnering organizations included the Migration Policy Institute, Center for Assessment, University of Chicago’s Consortium of School Improvement Research, WIDA, Stanford University, and Education First.

In February, CPS imposed budget cuts on predominantly Latino schools and the Forum united with key members of the school district’s Latino Advisory Committee to protest the decision, see statement here. Within 48 hours, substantial amounts of funding were returned to the schools for the balance of the school year.

Image: The Forum’s Karen Garibay-Mulattieri, Manager of Education Policy and Research, looks on as Jesse Ruiz reads a statement of protest from the Latino Advisory Council at a recent CPS Board meeting. 

In other news:

  • The Forum’s ECE Advocacy Day 2017 is on April 5, so register now as spots will fill up early. The Forum will offer two bilingual parent trainings which will cultivate and enhance parents’ abilities to effectively advocate on behalf of their children’s ECE program, to register click here.
  • The Forum’s education team is completing a white paper on valid and fair methods for calculating growth toward English proficiency in school accountability systems.
  • The Education Acuerdo met to discuss and plan for the CPS transition of community based programs to oversight by the Chicago Department of Family and Support Services (DFSS).



Posted In: Education