Listen to Hitting Left with guest Bill Ayers

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

My comments at Edweek blog

Yes, school closings did hurt learning

In response to Catherine Gewertz' otherwise fine post on her High School Connection (Edweek) blog:

I'm surprised to see the way the Consortium study is being spun. 60 schools closed, mainly in Chicago's under-served African-American communities.Thousands of lives disrupted. An explosion of violence in their wake. 94% of kids end up at some of the worst schools in the city.

Your headline reads: "Little Academic Impact, Report Finds." WBEZ headline reads: "CPS School Closings Neither Help Nor Hurt Learning." Sun-Times editorial says, "Academically, it's been a wash."

This is what happens when journalists accept the current proposition that "academics" = a single test score.

No, the arbitrary closing of dozens of schools in Chicago wasn't a "wash." Yes, the closings did have an affect on academics and learning.


  1. New York Times has more accurate coverage of the study:

    Still, the report’s findings are likely to provoke new debate about Mr. Duncan’s efforts to encourage the use of Chicago’s turnaround strategy nationwide. He has set the goal of closing and overhauling 1,000 failing schools a year nationwide, for five years, and Congress appropriated $3 billion in the stimulus law to finance the effort.



Agree? Disagree? Let me hear from you.