Education roundtable held at I-House

By Daschell M. Phillips
Staff Writer
Ebony Magazine and the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute co-hosted an education roundtable discussion titled, “Public Schools, Private Innovations: Building Successful Public Schools” at the University of Chicago’s International House Aug. 11. Both have professed an interest in helping to improve the quality of urban education.
The roundtable discussion was moderated by MSNBC’s Tamron Hall. Hall was once a news anchor on Chicago’s WFLD Fox News. Panelists who attended the discussion included Shayne Evans, director of University of Chicago Charter School; Julianne Malveaux, president of Bennett College; Elaine M. Allensworth, director for statistical analysis for the Consortium on Chicago School Research; Tim King, founder and president Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men; Russlyn Ali, assistant secretary for the Office of Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education; and Mary B. Richardson-Lowry, president of Chicago Public Schools, who sat in for CPS CEO Ron Huberman, who she said was sick.
Ebony, which was close to permanently closing its doors due to low readership, also used the discussion to introduce its new CEO, former White House Social Secretary Desiree Rogers, and its new editor-in-chief Amy DuBois Barnett, who said she was glad to be back home. Her parents were U. of C. graduate students and she said she was born “right on this campus.”
Former Ebony CEO Linda Johnson Rice, who will remain as president of the board, said Ebony was proud to take the issue of education from the pages of the magazine directly to the community with the roundtable discussion.
Issues that plague most urban school systems such as budget deficits, outdated curriculum and high dropout rates were some of the issues discussed at the forum.
“We have not improved inner city schools in over 30 years. We have left students behind and people have written them off,” Malveaux said. “The White House has great ideas about how to improve education but they are not making it down to our school districts.”
King said the lack of improvement in education is always blamed on lack of funding but he said that is not the real issue.
“About 90 percent of students in most urban schools are Black or Latino. The economy is not the issue but how we educate — or don’t educate —Blacks and Latinos is the issue,” King said. “Yes we are in an economic depression but the solution to education is a strong commitment to excellence.”
Evans said paying attention to students, allowing teacher autonomy and finding innovative ways to engage parents in the learning process are ways to prevent schools from being “dropout factories.”
“I don’t know any business that is using technologies that are 30 years old, but we’re using them in schools,” Evans said. “Kids have increased their cell phone use but schools ban them. Phones have dictionaries and other tools that are useful for learning.”
Evans said he’s seen programs where students have created movies and written extensive reports using technological tools and that programs that allow them to complete those types of projects “should not just be a part of summer programs but be used in schools year round.”
Ali said unless this issue seeps into the conscious of everyone in this country none of these ideas will work.
King, who wanted to explain how the forming of charter schools is an example of how communities responsibly contributed to improving urban education, was intercepted by Malveaux, who said charters still leave the majority of the city’s most needy students behind.
“The fact is we have to make public schools work because that is where the majority of our kids are going,” Malveaux said. “Let’s have a model school everywhere and make sure all students receive a quality education.”
Richardson-Lowry said the idea of “us against them on neighborhood versus charter schools is a losing proposition.” She said the gap between the qualities of each type of school must be closed.
The panel also said that including parents in the educational process would be beneficial.
“If parents and teachers work collectively it would build a community of trust for children,” Allensworth said.
Further discussion on the education roundtable can be found at ebonyjet.com.
d.phillips@hpherald.com

By Daschell M. Phillips Staff Writer
Ebony Magazine and the University of Chicago Urban Education Institute co-hosted an education roundtable discussion titled, “Public Schools, Private Innovations: Building Successful Public Schools” at the University of Chicago’s International House Aug. 11. Both have professed an interest in helping to improve the quality of urban education.The roundtable discussion was moderated by MSNBC’s Tamron Hall. Hall was once a news anchor on Chicago’s WFLD Fox News. Panelists who attended the discussion included Shayne Evans, director of University of Chicago Charter School; Julianne Malveaux, president of Bennett College; Elaine M. Allensworth, director for statistical analysis for the Consortium on Chicago School Research; Tim King, founder and president Urban Prep Charter Academy for Young Men; Russlyn Ali, assistant secretary for the Office of Civil Rights in the U.S. Department of Education; and Mary B. Richardson-Lowry, president of Chicago Public Schools, who sat in for CPS CEO Ron Huberman, who she said was sick.Ebony, which was close to permanently closing its doors due to low readership, also used the discussion to introduce its new CEO, former White House Social Secretary Desiree Rogers, and its new editor-in-chief Amy DuBois Barnett, who said she was glad to be back home. Her parents were U. of C. graduate students and she said she was born “right on this campus.” Former Ebony CEO Linda Johnson Rice, who will remain as president of the board, said Ebony was proud to take the issue of education from the pages of the magazine directly to the community with the roundtable discussion.Issues that plague most urban school systems such as budget deficits, outdated curriculum and high dropout rates were some of the issues discussed at the forum. “We have not improved inner city schools in over 30 years. We have left students behind and people have written them off,” Malveaux said. “The White House has great ideas about how to improve education but they are not making it down to our school districts.” King said the lack of improvement in education is always blamed on lack of funding but he said that is not the real issue.“About 90 percent of students in most urban schools are Black or Latino. The economy is not the issue but how we educate — or don’t educate —Blacks and Latinos is the issue,” King said. “Yes we are in an economic depression but the solution to education is a strong commitment to excellence.”Evans said paying attention to students, allowing teacher autonomy and finding innovative ways to engage parents in the learning process are ways to prevent schools from being “dropout factories.” “I don’t know any business that is using technologies that are 30 years old, but we’re using them in schools,” Evans said. “Kids have increased their cell phone use but schools ban them. Phones have dictionaries and other tools that are useful for learning.” Evans said he’s seen programs where students have created movies and written extensive reports using technological tools and that programs that allow them to complete those types of projects “should not just be a part of summer programs but be used in schools year round.” Ali said unless this issue seeps into the conscious of everyone in this country none of these ideas will work.King, who wanted to explain how the forming of charter schools is an example of how communities responsibly contributed to improving urban education, was intercepted by Malveaux, who said charters still leave the majority of the city’s most needy students behind. “The fact is we have to make public schools work because that is where the majority of our kids are going,” Malveaux said. “Let’s have a model school everywhere and make sure all students receive a quality education.” Richardson-Lowry said the idea of “us against them on neighborhood versus charter schools is a losing proposition.” She said the gap between the qualities of each type of school must be closed. The panel also said that including parents in the educational process would be beneficial. “If parents and teachers work collectively it would build a community of trust for children,” Allensworth said.Further discussion on the education roundtable can be found at ebonyjet.com.d.phillips@hpherald.com

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New owners reopen currency exchange

The 53rd Street Currency Exchange at 1371A E. 53rd St. has reopened, is under new ownership and is accepting the money orders issued by the previous owner and not yet cleared at the time of the owner’s sudden death earlier in the summer.
“Any problems with the previous owner’s [money orders], I’m going to be doing here,” said Harley Fisher, who ran the currency exchange at 1400 E. 47th St. that was handling the money orders while the 53rd Street location reopened. While still under construction, the currency exchange is still providing most of the services that will be available there. Moneygrams will be available, Harley told the Herald last week, “probably next week.” Other services available include bus pass sales, check cashing and license plate sticker renewals.
Regular customers of the 53rd Street store were startled in early July when the business was abruptly closed by the previous owner’s family, who were trying to keep the store open after his death did a sudden about-face, surprising even the employees at the store, who plastered a makeshift poster on the building’s storefront window.
“We are just as shocked as you,” the sign read in part. “We sincerely apologize.”
The greatest shock came to customers with outstanding money orders which began bouncing, an extremely rare event.
“That very rarely happens with a money order,” Fisher said. Fisher said he is not only redeeming those old money orders at the 53rd Street location but is also providing new ones that he assures customers are perfectly safe.
“Our money orders are good and guaranteed,” Fisher said. “If they want me to slap a guarantee on it, I have no problem with that.”

The 53rd Street Currency Exchange at 1371A E. 53rd St. has reopened, is under new ownership and is accepting the money orders issued by the previous owner and not yet cleared at the time of the owner’s sudden death earlier in the summer.“Any problems with the previous owner’s [money orders], I’m going to be doing here,” said Harley Fisher, who ran the currency exchange at 1400 E. 47th St. that was handling the money orders while the 53rd Street location reopened. While still under construction, the currency exchange is still providing most of the services that will be available there. Moneygrams will be available, Harley told the Herald last week, “probably next week.” Other services available include bus pass sales, check cashing and license plate sticker renewals.Regular customers of the 53rd Street store were startled in early July when the business was abruptly closed by the previous owner’s family, who were trying to keep the store open after his death did a sudden about-face, surprising even the employees at the store, who plastered a makeshift poster on the building’s storefront window.“We are just as shocked as you,” the sign read in part. “We sincerely apologize.”The greatest shock came to customers with outstanding money orders which began bouncing, an extremely rare event.“That very rarely happens with a money order,” Fisher said. Fisher said he is not only redeeming those old money orders at the 53rd Street location but is also providing new ones that he assures customers are perfectly safe.“Our money orders are good and guaranteed,” Fisher said. “If they want me to slap a guarantee on it, I have no problem with that.”

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DuSable museum to explore Mexican past

The DuSable Museum of African American History is celebrating the opening of its newest exhibit “The African Presence in Mexico: From Yanga To The Present” with a Yanga festival Aug. 28 and 29.
The festival will include music, dance, food and arts and crafts as they relate to the exhibit, which according to the museum is the most comprehensive project ever organized about African contributions to Mexican culture.
The exhibit, which was organized by The National Museum of Mexican Fine Arts, features three exhibitions: “The African Presence in Mexico: From Yanga to the Present;” “Roots, Resistance and Recognition;” and “Common Goals, Common Struggles and Common Ground.” The project examines the missing chapter in Mexican history that highlights the African contributions to Mexican culture over the past nearly 500 years.
The exhibit can be viewed during museum hours 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday at 740 E. 56th Pl.

The DuSable Museum of African American History is celebrating the opening of its newest exhibit “The African Presence in Mexico: From Yanga To The Present” with a Yanga festival Aug. 28 and 29. The festival will include music, dance, food and arts and crafts as they relate to the exhibit, which according to the museum is the most comprehensive project ever organized about African contributions to Mexican culture. The exhibit, which was organized by The National Museum of Mexican Fine Arts, features three exhibitions: “The African Presence in Mexico: From Yanga to the Present;” “Roots, Resistance and Recognition;” and “Common Goals, Common Struggles and Common Ground.” The project examines the missing chapter in Mexican history that highlights the African contributions to Mexican culture over the past nearly 500 years. The exhibit can be viewed during museum hours 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday and noon to 5 p.m. on Sunday at 740 E. 56th Pl.

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MSI, IIT teaming up

By Daschell M. Phillips
Staff Writer
The Museum of Science and Industry is collaborating with the Illinois Institute of Technology to offer a master’s degree in science education. For about five years MSI has been helping Chicago Public Schools teachers become certified in science education; it has now partnered with IIT to help teachers receive advanced degrees.
In 2008, Chicago Public Schools instituted a policy requiring all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade teachers to be Illinois State Board of Education Certified Content Area Specialists in the areas of language arts, mathematics, science and social studies by the 2010-2011 school year. In the same year, CPS withdrew funding from education reimbursement programs for teachers. This prompted MSI to create its Teacher Professional Development Series opening its museum as a training ground for teachers who needed ISBE’s science certification.
Nicole Kowrach, director of teaching and learning at MSI, said many of the teachers who completed the TPDS program wanted to receive an advance degree for career advancement so MSI began working with IIT to create the science education masters program.
“The two-year program is very hands-on. Teachers are not sitting in lecture halls — we provide hands-on instructor’s lessons and experts in classrooms — not just hearing and reading about it,” Kowrach said. She said the program also allows science teachers to learn directly from the scientists who bring their exhibits to the museum.
Tuition for each teacher who take TPDS classes is paid through the museum’s fundraising efforts. Tuition for the masters program is offered at a deeply discounted price to teachers as an agreement of the MSI IIT partnership.
d.phillips@hpherald.com

By Daschell M. Phillips Staff Writer
The Museum of Science and Industry is collaborating with the Illinois Institute of Technology to offer a master’s degree in science education. For about five years MSI has been helping Chicago Public Schools teachers become certified in science education; it has now partnered with IIT to help teachers receive advanced degrees.In 2008, Chicago Public Schools instituted a policy requiring all 6th, 7th, and 8th grade teachers to be Illinois State Board of Education Certified Content Area Specialists in the areas of language arts, mathematics, science and social studies by the 2010-2011 school year. In the same year, CPS withdrew funding from education reimbursement programs for teachers. This prompted MSI to create its Teacher Professional Development Series opening its museum as a training ground for teachers who needed ISBE’s science certification. Nicole Kowrach, director of teaching and learning at MSI, said many of the teachers who completed the TPDS program wanted to receive an advance degree for career advancement so MSI began working with IIT to create the science education masters program.“The two-year program is very hands-on. Teachers are not sitting in lecture halls — we provide hands-on instructor’s lessons and experts in classrooms — not just hearing and reading about it,” Kowrach said. She said the program also allows science teachers to learn directly from the scientists who bring their exhibits to the museum.Tuition for each teacher who take TPDS classes is paid through the museum’s fundraising efforts. Tuition for the masters program is offered at a deeply discounted price to teachers as an agreement of the MSI IIT partnership.d.phillips@hpherald.com

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Antheus giving Sutherland tenants help

Residents of the Sutherland Apartments received some good news last week, as several requests they had made of the new building owners were agreed to in a letter sent to them by the group.
Antheus Capital, the new owners of the Sutherland, has arranged moving assistance for the tenants and an extended stay before the building is closed for major renovations. They will also have priority when the building is reopened, slated for the spring of 2012.
“We have significant respect for the building’s history, the residents’ experiences of the building and the dignity associated with the efforts to preserve and develop the Sutherland as a neighborhood asset,” Peter Cassel, director of community development for MAC Property Management, Antheus’ management arm, wrote the tenants.
Residents will have 90 days before they must leave the building, rental and relocation assistance will be provided and the residents’ priority applications’ fees will be waived, as will move-in fees, according to the letter
While the concessions are potentially good news for the residents, local advocacy group the Kenwood – Oakland Community Organization is not celebrating yet.
“We are not out of the woods yet,” said Jitu Brown, an organizer for the group who has been supporting the tenants. “There are some things we need to get clarification on.”
Brown pointed to the 90-day window, during which the letter says the new owners will be initiating filings for possession, a step routinely taken in eviction proceedings, as a fuzzy area.
In its heyday, the Sutherland was a jazz mecca, bringing musicians from across the globe to play in its ballroom, which has recently seen a major renovation. Antheus’ plans for the property include enlarging the building’s units and keeping a third of the apartments affordable for people earning less than half of Chicagoland’s median income.

Residents of the Sutherland Apartments received some good news last week, as several requests they had made of the new building owners were agreed to in a letter sent to them by the group.Antheus Capital, the new owners of the Sutherland, has arranged moving assistance for the tenants and an extended stay before the building is closed for major renovations. They will also have priority when the building is reopened, slated for the spring of 2012.“We have significant respect for the building’s history, the residents’ experiences of the building and the dignity associated with the efforts to preserve and develop the Sutherland as a neighborhood asset,” Peter Cassel, director of community development for MAC Property Management, Antheus’ management arm, wrote the tenants. Residents will have 90 days before they must leave the building, rental and relocation assistance will be provided and the residents’ priority applications’ fees will be waived, as will move-in fees, according to the letterWhile the concessions are potentially good news for the residents, local advocacy group the Kenwood – Oakland Community Organization is not celebrating yet.“We are not out of the woods yet,” said Jitu Brown, an organizer for the group who has been supporting the tenants. “There are some things we need to get clarification on.”Brown pointed to the 90-day window, during which the letter says the new owners will be initiating filings for possession, a step routinely taken in eviction proceedings, as a fuzzy area. In its heyday, the Sutherland was a jazz mecca, bringing musicians from across the globe to play in its ballroom, which has recently seen a major renovation. Antheus’ plans for the property include enlarging the building’s units and keeping a third of the apartments affordable for people earning less than half of Chicagoland’s median income.

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Hairston: I’m not running for mayor

By SAM CHOLKE
Staff Writer
Despite reports in the Chicago Sun-Times, Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) said she never had intentions to run for mayor.
“No, I am not running for mayor,” Hairston said in an interview on Aug. 11.
She said she has mused privately about what it would be like to be mayor of Chicago, but she lumped it in with daydreams like what it would be like to be a billionaire or an astronaut.
“Sure you think about it,” she said. “You think about what you would do differently if you were in charge…. I think about it all the time.”
After the Sun-Times reported Aug. 10 the alderman for Hyde Park and South Shore was being urged “at the grass roots level” to run for mayor, Hairston said her office received many calls from Hyde Parkers excited about the idea of another local politician seeking higher office.
“I have taken no steps toward running for mayor,” Hairston said. “I have no advisory council, I have raised no money — nothing. I have all these things for the alderman race.”
Mayor Richard M. Daley has not announced yet whether he will seek re-election.
s.cholke@hpherald.com

By SAM CHOLKEStaff Writer
Despite reports in the Chicago Sun-Times, Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) said she never had intentions to run for mayor.“No, I am not running for mayor,” Hairston said in an interview on Aug. 11. She said she has mused privately about what it would be like to be mayor of Chicago, but she lumped it in with daydreams like what it would be like to be a billionaire or an astronaut. “Sure you think about it,” she said. “You think about what you would do differently if you were in charge…. I think about it all the time.”After the Sun-Times reported Aug. 10 the alderman for Hyde Park and South Shore was being urged “at the grass roots level” to run for mayor, Hairston said her office received many calls from Hyde Parkers excited about the idea of another local politician seeking higher office.“I have taken no steps toward running for mayor,” Hairston said. “I have no advisory council, I have raised no money — nothing. I have all these things for the alderman race.”Mayor Richard M. Daley has not announced yet whether he will seek re-election.s.cholke@hpherald.com

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Kenwood teacher becoming principal

By Daschell M. Phillips
Staff Writer
Hyde Park resident Arleen Manning, who worked as a math teacher at Kenwood Academy High School for two years, was nominated by Kenwood Principal Elizabeth Kirby to attend the New Leaders For New Schools principal preparation program and will start her principal residency this school year at King College Prep High School.
Manning, who is from Chesapeake, Va., worked as a management team leader for Phillip Morris, Frito Lay and Corning corporations before she decided to become a teacher. She’s been a teacher for about 13 years working in schools in Virginia and Indiana before becoming a teacher at Kenwood.
She said that from the moment she became a teacher at Kenwood Elizabeth Kirby, principal of Kenwood, began developing her into a school leader.
“I had no desire to do New Leaders For New Schools — I just wanted to teach,” Manning said. “But Ms. Kirby encouraged me and said I could do it.”
Kirby said Manning shows natural ability for the role of principal.
“As a teacher she was always high energy, student-centered and team-centered,” Kirby said. “ She would just jump in and take initiative, and she’s very passionate.”
Kirby said there is a national shortage of principals and “as principals retire we need qualified educators to take the reigns.”
According to its Web site, New Leaders for New Schools was founded in 2000 by five business and education graduate students who drew upon their extensive interviews with school leaders and district superintendents, their own experiences as classroom teachers and leaders and the most current thinking in education and policy to create a program that attracts, prepares and supports outstanding individuals to become the next generation of school leaders.
Kirby was a member of the second cohort of NLNS graduates and under her tenure Kenwood has been the host to eight NLNS interns. Seven of them have gone on to become principals and one is currently an assistant principal.
“We are looking forward to working with Ms. Manning this school year,” said Jeff Wright, principal at King. “We are grateful that NLNS picked King as a host site. We had a successful year with our first resident and we have similar hopes for Ms. Manning.”
Once Manning completes her one-year residency at King, she will take an eligibility test and be certified to lead a school. Once she becomes a principal she will receive a visit from a coach every two weeks and take development classes twice a month.
d.phillips@hpherald.com

By Daschell M. Phillips Staff Writer
Hyde Park resident Arleen Manning, who worked as a math teacher at Kenwood Academy High School for two years, was nominated by Kenwood Principal Elizabeth Kirby to attend the New Leaders For New Schools principal preparation program and will start her principal residency this school year at King College Prep High School.Manning, who is from Chesapeake, Va., worked as a management team leader for Phillip Morris, Frito Lay and Corning corporations before she decided to become a teacher. She’s been a teacher for about 13 years working in schools in Virginia and Indiana before becoming a teacher at Kenwood. She said that from the moment she became a teacher at Kenwood Elizabeth Kirby, principal of Kenwood, began developing her into a school leader. “I had no desire to do New Leaders For New Schools — I just wanted to teach,” Manning said. “But Ms. Kirby encouraged me and said I could do it.” Kirby said Manning shows natural ability for the role of principal. “As a teacher she was always high energy, student-centered and team-centered,” Kirby said. “ She would just jump in and take initiative, and she’s very passionate.” Kirby said there is a national shortage of principals and “as principals retire we need qualified educators to take the reigns.” According to its Web site, New Leaders for New Schools was founded in 2000 by five business and education graduate students who drew upon their extensive interviews with school leaders and district superintendents, their own experiences as classroom teachers and leaders and the most current thinking in education and policy to create a program that attracts, prepares and supports outstanding individuals to become the next generation of school leaders.Kirby was a member of the second cohort of NLNS graduates and under her tenure Kenwood has been the host to eight NLNS interns. Seven of them have gone on to become principals and one is currently an assistant principal. “We are looking forward to working with Ms. Manning this school year,” said Jeff Wright, principal at King. “We are grateful that NLNS picked King as a host site. We had a successful year with our first resident and we have similar hopes for Ms. Manning.”Once Manning completes her one-year residency at King, she will take an eligibility test and be certified to lead a school. Once she becomes a principal she will receive a visit from a coach every two weeks and take development classes twice a month.d.phillips@hpherald.com

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