The New Jim Crow: "Raising" scores by pushouts, expulsions, suspensions, withdrawals...
- Subject: The New Jim Crow: "Raising" scores by pushouts, expulsions, suspensions, withdrawals...
- From: "George N. Schmidt" <Csubstance@AOL.COM>
- Date: Sat, 10 Jun 2000 10:06:39 EDT
- Reply-to: Assessment Reform Network Mailing List <ARN-L@LISTS.CUA.EDU>
- Sender: Assessment Reform Network Mailing List <ARN-L@LISTS.CUA.EDU>
June 10, 2000
From: George Schmidt, Editor, Substance
Re: Black and Latino kids are being forced out: Data and Demographics on
Since there is a danger in cyberspace that one source can change, and since
Catalyst has a way of revising its reporting to conform to the Chicago Board
of Education's view of things (and the funding it depends on from a handful
of foundations), here are some numbers from the Chicago school board itself.
Every September for the past 40 years (or so), Chicago has done its annual
"Racial Ethnic Survey", a head count of the kids for the federal government.
Those surveys for September 1995 and September 1999 are the basis for the
following data and interpretation.
In September 1995, Chicago's public schools had 412,921 students.
By September 1999, Chicago's public schools had 431,750 students.
That may or may not be the good news. Please bear with me and read on:
In September 1995, Chicago's public elementary schools had 310,202 students.
By September 1999, Chicago's public elementary schools had 333,005 students.
That is a gain of 7 percent or so, by my count, in the elementary schools.
In September 1995, Chicago's public high schools had 102,719 students.
By September 1999, Chicago's public high schools had 93,210 students.
That is a loss of 9 percent in the high schools unless my calculator broke.
What happened? We got "standards and accountability".
In 1995, Chicago's City Hall took over the public schools and Paul Vallas was
appointed "CEO" of the Chicago school system. By June 1996, the first 8th
grade graduation requirements ("standards") were in place and the first kids
had to go to summer school to "pass" elementary school. Those who "failed"
the test at the end of the summer school were sent to "transition centers."
By 1997, those 8th grade requirements were based on the Grade Equivalent
score on the Iowa Tests of Basic Skills reading and math sections. Also in
1997, "accountability" was extended to include teachers, and the Vallas
administration terminated 188 high school teachers who were teaching in
"failing" schools according to their schools' TAP (high school version of the
ITBS) scores. The hearings to decide which teachers would be fired were
conducted by the local schools in collaboration with "external partners"
(including some of our most prominent educational "progressives" who joined
in the "off with their heads" charge against the teachers). Sp by 1997,
everyone knew that high stakes applied to both children and teachers. The
results are now in.
Since 1996, at least 70,000 elementary school children in Chicago have been
forced to attend summer school, where they get test prep materials for six
weeks. Of those, more than 25,000 were 8th graders who didn't meet the cut
Catalyst and other apologists for "standards and accountability" this month
changed their way of calculating dropouts to conform to the Chicago Board of
Education's new way of recalculating the data. That's why I suggest these raw
data are much more useful. Chicago is about to embark on another expensive
foray into statistical obfuscation in order to hide what is evident here.
The real "bottom line" for the past five years is already in for Chicago.
This city, as the standard bearer for urban "standards" (along with North
Carolina, cited as an example in the State of the Union speeches of William
Clinton), has somehow lost around 10,000 kids between elementary school and
high school. That's the body count, but there is a bit more.
The number of black kids in Chicago's high schools had decreased by nearly
10,000 since 1995. According to the same data:
In September 1995, Chicago's elementary schools had 169,946 black children.
In September 1999, Chicago's elementary schools had 173,751 black children.
In September 1995, Chicago's high schools had 58,192 black children.
In September 1999, Chicago's high schools had 48,976 black children.
Latino kids are getting almost the same treatment, but the great increase in
the overall numbers masks it. The number of " Hispanic " kids in Chicago's
high schools has barely increase (by a total of 700) since 1995, while the
total number in the public school system has increased by 18,000! Here are
In September 1995, Chicago's public schools had 129,052 "Hispanic" students.
In September 1999, Chicago's public schools had 147,705 "Hispanic" students.
In September 1995, Chicago's elementary schools had 99,838 Hispanic students.
In September 1999, Chicago's elementary schools had 116,316 Hispanic students.
In September 1995, Chicago's high schools had 29,214 Hispanic students.
In September 1999, Chicago's high schools had 29,936 Hispanic students.
The way things are going here, I suspect that by next year, the Chicago Board
of Education, with the backing of the federal government, will simply stop
reporting the data contained in the "Racial Ethnic Survey." Cynical? I'm just
feeling a bit down today. As I've previously pointed out here, Chicago has
purchased most of the "progressive" educators here and all of the major
media, so these numbers have to be smuggled out.
One of the other things we've become accustomed to here in Chicago is the use
of public relations distracters (as I write about in my analysis of the ITBS
scores on page one of the May-June issue of Substance). The most interesting
of those during the past 30 days has been the New York Times article on
Northside College Preparatory High School in Chicago. But big time media
reporters are not the only ones capable of throwing distracters in our way
here. Some people on this list are very adept at doing the same.
Until I am offered some comparable data from some other large cities, please
excuse me if I'm not impressed with the erudition and pseudo-erudition of
some people's postings. In fact, I'm going to delete materials from certain
people without reading them until they respond with some data from the big
cities within which they work. I don't really care how many heroes of the old
Civil Rights Movement we're buddies with if the system we're supporting in
June 2000 is driving thousands of black kids out of school every year. As
Lincoln said in another context, give me the straight party line without the
mixing in "base alloy of hypocrisy."
Thanks to Walt Haney, we have the body count for Texas. Walt's data show that
the "Texas Miracle" attributed to George W. Bush and the Republican Party
(with a jump start, let's not forget for all the confused 'independents' out
there, from billionaire crony capitalist H. Ross Perot) has been destroying
the lives of tens of thousands of African American and Latino children and,
especially, young adults.
Thanks to Substance, you now have the body count for Chicago. The data we
offer you here show that the "Chicago Miracle" endorsed by William J. Clinton
and the Democratic Party has been destroying the lives of thousands of
African American and Latino children and young adults.
Anybody else got some numbers to go with the erudite abstractions and
historical sentimentalism that wafts through here from time to time?
Theresa Glenn recently posted a note that the kids who "failed" the North
Carolina test where she could see them were black.
Why am I not surprised?
George N. Schmidt
5132 W. Berteau
Chicago, IL 60641
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