Since teacher salary is a topic of agitation, let's take a look at District Level office salaries.
Schools belong to "Networks" - groupings of schools under a Network Chief. Each Network Chief has a staff. Currently, CPS has increased its mid-layer bloat to 17 Network Offices up from just a few years ago.
Crain's Chicago did a deep-dive a few years ago on cost-saving measures that could be implemented at CPS indicating that there is swelling and redundancies in middle-management. With titles like "Senior Manager" and "Director" it's impossible to understand what these positions do.
While Crain's numbers are from a couple years ago, the point is still valid today.
It's hard to know why so many dollars are spent out of the classroom.
Network Chiefs cost the District $162,500 each for a total of over $3 million.*
*This does not include Independent Schools Network, AUSL salaries or the Chief of Network Chiefs. The Executive Director of the Independent Schools Network in CPS makes $154,909. The Chief of AUSL networks makes $140,957. Chief of Chiefs makes $180,000. Instructional Support Leaders are members of CTU and part of the strike.
The average Network employee makes $99,604.63.
Mayor Lightfoot made a sign to help her get her message out about contract talks with Chicago Teachers Union. Parents can do that too!
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This is related to ISBE's Corrective Action on CPS service for Diverse Learner students. See more on that here >>>
Since CPS Legal is above the CEO's office on the CPS Organizational Chart, let's see how much they cost.
This breakdown does NOT include attorneys in other departments like Office of Diverse Learners Supports, EOCO compliance officers/investigators, Office of Local School Council Relations and anywhere else CPS uses attorneys in-house.
CPS Legal costs the District almost $8 million in salaries.
Children suffer under CPS's lackadaisical approach to resolving conflicts. The newest development showing this is the Department of Education's Office of Civil Right's corrective action for Title IX compliance. Title IX is federal measure protecting students from sex-based discrimination. Oversight will be 3 years and require the District to overhaul its processes, supply proof and paperwork for review and start to offer notifications and remedial action for students.
Does this sound familiar?
Unfortunately, it does.
CPS is also under a corrective action for its policies regarding Special Education. Here again, CPS failed students and is now under oversight by the Illinois State Board of Education.
The overhaul is much needed for our students with OCR finding things as such as:
According to the Investigation’s Unit Manager, the only standard used to determine whether the Unit would investigate an allegation was whether Investigations Unit staff “collectively feel it calls for an investigation.”
Strikingly, CPS determines its investigative needs, by what seems like a show of hands.
Investigations were conducted by a patchwork of both school-level personnel and District personnel without any District-wide coordination of efforts and results. This patchwork structure compromised the ability of students to learn in a safe educational environment.
No processes, no policies. This hurts our children. Why would CPS Legal be compelled to investigate when it potentially increases the District's liability? This is the same District whose employees regularly push parents into mediation, due process or flat out tell parents to "sue us".
And to that point, CPS's General Counsel admits there is no central process for investigation of complaints.
"The District lacked written guidelines or procedures for school-based Title IX investigations, and District witnesses did not describe a consistent practice or approach. The District’s General Counsel acknowledged that no entity in the District’s central office, including the Law Department, supervised investigations into sexual harassment allegations that were handled at the school level..."
How is it that the General Counsel's office sits at the top of CPS's organization chart, but doesn't implement basic needs for our students?
At what point will CPS be overseen in full by outside agencies - it's becoming clearer day by day that CPS can't manage itself.
Is this how other Districts operate?
In Los Angeles, the second largest school district, Legal reports to the Superintendent and to the Board of Education.
In Miami-Dade, Legal is a service group spread out under Compliance and Human Capital, under the Superintendent.
In Clark County Nevada, Legal is a service group under the Superintendent and on par with the other operating offices in the District.
In Broward County, Legal is on par with the Superintendent's office with Broward County Community listed at the top of their organizational chart. This is because the Board of Education is elected.
In Houston, Legal reports to the Superintendent.
In Hillsborough, Florida, the Board of Education has its own attorney separate from the District and the District's General Counsel reports directly to the Superintendent.
And in Hawaii, the Legal Department is underneath the Administrative Assistant Office, which then reports to the Superintendent.
In short, CPS is the only large school district with Legal sitting above the Superintendent.
Chicago Public Schools released its Capital Spending plans with its new budget but doesn't know its own numbers. From Walter Brezski, "Then, Rivera said it would take $600M to make all CPS schools fully accessible when asked by a board member. How does Rivera know this if he doesn't know how many schools are accessible? And, people wonder why Chicago children aren't being protected by CPS..."
According to the most recent CPS Accessibility Report in 2015, 42% of CPS schools aren't fully accessible/ADA compliant with 194 schools not accessible and 50 being first floor usable only.
Board Member Breland asking Mr. Rivera questions about decision-making:
Board Member Sotelo asking Mr. Rivera questions about ADA compliance:
When Janice Jackson took to the radio with WBEZ, she discussed the upcoming expenditures on accessibility - about $10.5 million slated in the upcoming CPS budget.
Chalkbeat covered the lack of accessibility in CPS schools.
The expenditure does not go far enough, as one parent writes to the Chicago Tribune.
CPS disabilities access is shameful
Listening to Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson on WBEZ’s “The Morning Shift” was heartbreaking. Advocates for people with disabilities were stunned when Jackson proudly proclaimed that she is working hard to get children with disabilities access to first floors in schools. Does she realize we aren’t in the 1919 school year, but the 2019 school year? It’s unacceptable that children with disabilities do not have access to entire schools.
Luckily for Jackson, she isn’t physically disabled. But if she were, how would she feel if, every day, she couldn’t leave the first floor at CPS headquarters?
What about educators with disabilities? They can teach only on the first floor? Vendors with disabilities have to be turned away? Parents with disabilities? They can’t see their child perform in a second-floor auditorium?
Jackson goes on and on about equity in CPS. But she appears to be only interested in race equity. Equity is also accessibility, no matter your race.
Every other government agency from the CTA to City Hall to the post office is accessible. It’s unacceptable that schools aren’t.
— Nancy Curran, Chicago
Redwood Literacy is looking for schools to partner with them on dyslexia training for teachers and implementing proven interventions.
As research suggests, early intervention is important for students with dyslexia.
Redwood wants to work with Chicago area teachers to improve outcomes for students with dyslexia while building a partnership through training.
Check out the opportunity - maybe your school would like to partner!
Thanks to Walter Brzeski for sharing his up-to-date from June 2019 accessibility information from Chicago Public Schools (which he received in a FOIA request).
While some CPS schools are completely accessible, some are first floor only accessible. Unfortunately, not all Chicago Public Schools buildings are accessible.
CPS uses designations - usable, first floor usable and not accessible.
Read after the jump if your school is accessible.
Have an idea for a topic or want to contribute to the blog? Email Us >>>
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