Category: Navigating Chicago Schools

The International Baccalaureate: What it is and how it works

*SPONSORED POST BY GEMS WORLD ACADEMY*

The International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum framework has taken root in Chicago, with multiple public and private schools in the area offering at least one segment of the IB, and many schools considering to add it.

Those familiar with the academic programs in traditional American schools might very well wonder: What is the IB? What does it offer that other curriculums don’t?

The IB was founded in Switzerland 50 years ago in response to ...

Posted on December 10, 2018 at 11:52 AM by GEMS World Academy Chicago

This CPS resource makes high school search so much easier

Many Chicago parents, myself included, start thinking about high school at the same time we're applying to preschool. This phenomenon isn’t limited to “type A” parents or “helicopter” parents or overachieving parents. We begin thinking about high school so early because our children’s access to education can influence major life decisions such as where we live, and because to new and not-so-new parents, public high schools in Chicago are something of a mystery. 

What are public high sc...

Posted on December 03, 2018 at 1:07 PM by Amy Johnson

How to apply for CPS preschools

If you’re thinking about CPS magnet schools for preschool next fall, the time to look into those programs is…now! Applications for the 2019-2020 school year for 4 magnet preschools are due December 14, 2018. If you are thinking about other preschool programs hosted in CPS schools, the deadline varies as outlined below.

There are different options available, with programs housed in select public elementary schools across the city. Most have already begun providing tours and scheduling o...

Posted on December 03, 2018 at 10:40 AM by Chicago School GPS

How to apply to a CPS school in 5 easy steps

Photo credit: Bruno Girin/Flickr

CPS application season is well underway! The Chicago Public Schools application deadline for the 2019-2020 school year is Friday, December 14, 2018. Students entering kindergarten through 8th grade may apply for open seats at schools across the city, with a limited number of pre-k options available as well (click here for the basics on CPS preschool).

In CPS, there are two main types of schools to which you can apply:


Magnet schools and ...

Posted on December 03, 2018 at 8:49 AM by Chicago School GPS

Unschooling is a thing. But is it right for your child?

To school or not to school?

Wait, is that even a question? For hundreds of Chicago-area parents and many more across the nation, it is a very real one. In the past decade, there has been a nationwide surge in parents choosing to homeschool, unschool, or choose a non-traditional school without a fixed curriculum or grades. But why?

Self-Directed Education
Proponents believe that unschooling provides opportunities for children to explore their interests without the limits of a tradit...

Posted on November 08, 2018 at 3:51 PM by Aimee Skinner

New CPS school ratings are out. But what do they mean?

On Friday, Chicago Public Schools released a lot of new data. While CPS's continued enrollment slide made the biggest headlines (enrollment is linked to how much funding each district receives), the new school ratings are likely more important to parents, especially those in the thick of school search. Find out where your school—or the schools you're considering for your child next year—ranks here. 

My son's school's rating dropped from a 1+ to a 1. That's disappointing, for sure, but ...

Posted on October 29, 2018 at 11:27 AM by Laura Baginski

Doing well in school creates opportunities? Sadly, that's a myth.

We’ve been telling students and families that doing well in school creates opportunities—that showing up, doing the work, and meeting teachers’ expectations will prepare them for their futures. Unfortunately, that’s a myth.

That’s the subject of The Opportunity Myth: What Students Can Show Us About How School Is Letting Them Down—and How to Fix It, a new research report we at TNTP, a national nonprofit dedicated to ending the injustice of educational inequality, published last month. 
...

Posted on October 17, 2018 at 12:35 PM

The little-known strategy of getting into Chicago schools

“When is the best time to begin my school search?” is a question often posed by families looking to start the always dreaded but ultimately necessary rite of passage known as the “Chicago School Search.” Sometimes the question is followed up by a plaintive, “Oh my goodness! Am I too late?!” Rest easy, Chicago families. The answer is not as cut-and-dried as one would think — and ultimately, you are never “too late.”

As the third largest city in the U.S., Chicago is home to a vast range ...

Posted on October 10, 2018 at 4:50 PM by Chicago School GPS

Here’s what outgoing union chief Karen Lewis told Chicago teachers

Originally posted on Chalkbeat by Cassie Walker Burke on August 27, 2018

 

Retiring Chicago Teachers Union chief Karen Lewis, who has been fighting brain cancer, sent a note to Chicago teachers this morning urging them to support former Vice President Jesse Sharkey as her replacement and endorsing CTU Political Director Stacy Davis Gates for the position of vice-president.

“Our enemies are banking on this transition in CTU leadership to confuse, conflate and co-opt our union,” s...

Posted on August 30, 2018 at 7:00 AM by Cassie Walker Burke

Back-to-school prep tips for parents of kids with special needs

For most parents, back-to-school time means buying the kids a new backpack and shoes, and maybe taking them for a haircut. For parents of kids with special needs, however, going back-to-school can be much more stressful for both them and their children than just a shopping trip to
the mall. Children who are not successful in school, either for emotional/behavioral or academic reasons, often feel happier and calmer over the summer break when they are not dealing with the demands of school...

Posted on August 09, 2018 at 7:00 AM by Lara Cleary