Giving Compass’ Take:
• Education Dive interviews Chicago Public Schools Chief Education Officer Janice Jackson about her district’s academic success. Metrics play a big role, but budget challenges are an issue.
• How can we support the efforts of school systems to measure outcomes and base sound policy based on the data? Jackson’s thoughts helps reveal what conditions are like on the ground.
It’s probably not surprising that Chicago Public Schools (CPS) Chief Education Officer Janice Jackson, who leads the nation’s third-largest school district, shares a similar homegrown career background to former New York City Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña. Jackson attended the city’s schools before becoming a teacher and working her way to the top leadership position, and she still lives in the predominantly African-American community of Bronzeville.
“It’s not about just making decisions and then I go back somewhere and nobody sees me,” she told Education Dive during a recent visit to CPS’ headquarters in downtown Chicago. “I see the same people who I’m making decisions for in the grocery store, at the park, at the rec center. I think being a part of the community is really important and it holds you accountable in a way that maybe I wouldn’t be as accountable if I didn’t have to look at the people every day who I’m making decisions for.”
But she also said the district’s recent academic successes have been built on strong recruitment overall, with effective preparation for working in an urban school system making up for the lack of firsthand life experience in educators from beyond the city, as well as a focus on bringing strong principals into schools.
Jackson touched on the city’s budget issues and school closures, the realities of its segregated neighborhoods, and its considerable improvement in recent years.
Read the full article about data and accountability for school success by Roger Riddell at Education Dive.
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