Watch out! Tribune, Joyce Foundation team up to push school privatization

Newspaper Salesman 1flipThe Chicago Tribune published some pre-digested results of a new public education survey they carried out with support from the Joyce Foundation.

Shockingly, the poll results, according to the Tribune, suggest that most people approve of the Tribune’s positions on teacher accountability and school privatization.

Here’s what my look at the actual poll found:

Who responded:

  • 50% of those polled were white. Less than 9% of CPS students are white.
  • 30% of those polled make more than $ 75,000 a year. 87% of CPS students are from low-income families that qualify for federal free or reduced lunches.
  • 43% of those polled do not know a Chicago Public School teacher or teachers’ union member. Really?

Of course, the Trib claims that results were “weighted” to assure a mix consistent with city demographics…but then, like Mayor Rahm, most of the white people in Chicago send their children to private schools.

Key results the Trib decided not to tell you about: 

  • The most popular answer to their question about what to do about underperforming schools was “devote more resources while keeping the staff intact” (37%). The least selected answers were “close the school and transfer students to a higher-performing school” (only 6%) and “allow an experienced nonprofit to come in and run the school” (18.8%) (question 24).
  • Nearly as many people think the CPS budget should be balanced by raising taxes on businesses as by closing schools. Oops! (question 31).

One more thing the Trib left out: the Joyce Foundation also funded the notorious report, “What’s Trust Got to do with it?” which was re-titled “Giving Parents the Run-around on School Turnarounds” by the university-based National Education Policy Center in a review. The press release announcing that review said:

(T)he report never treats seriously the substantive concerns of resistant parents; it never questions the fundamental strategy that it proposes communicating about….The result is a document that’s “paternalistic and arrogant” in its “criticism of parents for not knowing what’s good for them.”

So, parents, look out when the Tribune and the Joyce Foundation team up to talk about education.

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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.
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