CPS Announces More Rigorous Charter School Accountability Policy

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) on Monday announced a proposed charter school accountability policy that will hold charters to the same academic standards as District-run schools and allow CPS to take swift action against poor performers. In conjunction with this policy, the District will recommend immediately placing ten charter schools on an Academic Warning List, which could result in the closure of these schools if performance does not significantly improve. Four of these schools are receiving additional scrutiny and could be recommended for revocation or non-renewal. “Establishing high-quality school options in every neighborhood throughout Chicago is among our highest priorities, but we cannot make that a reality without a rigorous accountability policy that holds every public school in Chicago to the same standard,” said CPS CEO Forrest Claypool.

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Education

To ensure schools are meeting the District’s standards, CPS will leverage each charter’s School Quality Rating Policy (SQRP) score to evaluate performance. SQRP is a proven accountability tool and holding charter schools to higher standards based on SQRP will create parity among all CPS schools. Under the new policy, which will be voted on by the Board of Education at its October 2015 Board Meeting, any charter that has a Level 3 SQRP rating, a two-year SQRP point value average of 2.5 or lower, or a Level 2 rating in three consecutive years will be placed on the Academic Warning List. Schools placed on the Academic Warning List must improve their performance or risk losing their charter. Charter schools placed on the Academic Warning List will be required to submit a written remediation plan to rectify the problems that led to the school’s performance. If a school does not meet the terms of its remediation plan in one year, it will be recommended for charter revocation. Under the new policy, a charter will also be recommended for revocation if it is on the Warning List for two consecutive years. If the new policy is approved by the Board of Education, the following ten schools will be placed on the Academic Warning List:

  • Amandla Charter High School
  • ASPIRA – Early College High School
  • Betty Shabazz – Barbara A. Sizemore Academy Elementary School
  • Bronzeville Lighthouse Charter Elementary School
  • CICS – ChicagoQuest High School
  • CICS – Larry Hawkins High School
  • Galapagos Elementary Charter School
  • Instituto – Justice Lozano High School
  • Kwame Nkrumah Academy Elementary School
  • Prologue – Joshua Johnston Charter High School

At the Board Meeting, CPS will also recommend the Board approve a grade expansion of KIPP Create. The expansion will allow the school to serve students in grades K-4, in addition to grades 5-8, which are currently offered at the school. If approved, the grade level expansion would begin in SY 16-17.

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