Ray, Bret Harte in school news

Teacher Survey for Ray Elementary School, 5631 S. Kimbark Ave.

Ray school is seeking community input on its arts teaching position. Due to Chicago Public Schools budget cuts, the school can only hire one teacher and must decide whether that teacher should be a visual arts or music teacher.

To take Ray’s two-question survey, visit surveymonkey.com/s/RaySchool

Back to school night and LSC vacancies at Bret Harte Elementary School, 1556 E. 56th St.

Bret Harte Back to School Night will take place at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 11. The school’s local school council has parent and community representative vacancies. Those interested in joining the council should attend the next meeting and be prepared to make a brief statement regarding one’s interest in one of the positions. Bret Harte’s LSC meetings take place at 5 p.m. on the first Tuesday of each month.

Back to School Night for parents at Kenwood Academy High School, 5015 S. Blackstone Ave.

Parents are invited to attend Parent Back to School Night to learn about their children’s schedules and meet their teachers. The event will take place from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., on Sept. 12.

New school rating system for CPS

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) has a new comprehensive School Quality Rating Policy; a five-tier performance system based on school performance metrics that provide multiple lines of evidence for measuring school quality. Under this new policy, all schools, including district-operated, charter and contract schools, will be held to a common accountability framework that places a greater emphasis on student growth.

The School Quality Rating Policy uses research-based metrics to assess student learning and performance outcomes while also taking into consideration feedback from students and teachers. Metrics include student attendance, freshmen on track scores, college enrollment and persistence, educator and student surveys, and academic growth with an emphasis on growth for priority groups such as African-American students, English Language Learners and Diverse Learners.

Schools that are rated Tier 1, Tier 2 and Tier 3 will be considered in good academic standing and will not be required to receive academic improvement strategies determined by District leadership. CPS has done away with placing schools on “probation.” However, schools that fall under Tier 4 and Tier 5 will receive targeted interventions. Schools that remain at Tier 5 for multiple years may receive actions such as the replacement of the principal and faculty members, new Local School Council elections or be subject to turnaround according to state law, according to a statement from CPS.

CPS worked with the Chicago Teacher’s Union and several community based organizations and other institutions including Raise Your Hand and VOYCE, to develop the new rating policy, which will be put in place starting during the 2013-2014 school year.

Compiled by Herald Staff Writer Daschell M. Phillips.