Stop the presses! Trib reports truth about turnarounds!

A lot of us school reformers did a double take reading yesterday’s Tribune cover story on high school turnarounds by education reporter Azam Ahmed.

It’s a shock to read a story that doesn’t just pay lip service to the opposition to CPS’s turnarounds in that superficial “telling both sides of the story” format that we’re used to. You know, they write the story based entirerly on the CPS press release, and then get (usually) me to throw in a critical comment for “balance.”

Some credit must go to the crisis in the newspaper industry, which seems to have emboldened the Trib lately.

More credit should go to Catalyst, which has veered away from its former cheerleading (such as calling AUSL a “proven program” before results were in) to more fact-based stories such as “Turnarounds keep most students” which made use of Consortium research and acknowledged that AUSL school Dodge was on a similar upward trajectory in test scores and a similar downward trajectory in student enrollment as nearby traditional neighborhood school Dett.

The story also noted that AUSL schools receive extra funds and resources that are not available to traditional schools, and that Sherman had pushed out a number of students. 

For whatever reason, it’s good to see more accurate and unbaised reporting. Hope it lasts, and that the President

is learning something to balance out the lies his Education Secretary has been telling, before Duncan is allowed to

use NCLB to send the entire nation down the same path of destruction he took Chicago.

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About the PURE Thoughts blogger
Julie Woestehoff is PURE's executive director. Julie's work has earned her a Ford Foundation award and recognition as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Chicago.