Let’s just state this for the record…
…I have no definite idea which schools that CPS is interested in closing. Nope. No insider information.
But I was interacting with some of the interesting CPS parents and teachers over at CPS Obsessed and our blog hostess posted the following in the comments:
The trouble is…..I don’t see how communities can do with without a list even say, the 50 schools most likely to close. Are they supposed to infer whether their school is on the list? Is any underenrolled school supposed to mobilize to make a case for their school? It’s a lot to ask people to make a strong, comprehensive case to save their school when they don’t know if they’re targeted. People get much more feisty when they are in immediate danger of change happening.
Oh man, wouldn’t that be interesting? To have a list of the 50 schools most likely to close?
And here I am cleaning up data and I’ve got these spreadsheets in front of me and I’m a curious CPS Parent and, well…
If we take Barbara Byrd-Bennett at her word…and her words to Jeff Berkowitz at the City Club of Chicago on Monday, November 26, 2012 were (I quote):
Bennett: Performance has nothing to do with our utilization plan. They are two separate questions.
Berkowitz: But, for closure, performance has something to do with it, right?
Bennett: I am not closing a school for performance. Utilization is something totally different.
…we could take the list that CPS released (no challenge from Apples to Apples about the data, just their very own list) and sort it. Simply…sort it.
Looking at the types of data that they released together, there will most likely be a number of variables that go into this decision beyond the straight Space Utilization Index. Variables such as: Enrollment Change (trending up or down?) and costs to maintain the facilities (How expensive is it to keep it open? How about per student?) They might backtrack and decide to use performance data, or point to charter school contract obligations, or anything else at this point. The prioritization of those variables will most likely change the ranking of schools on the list and CPS has not yet shared how they will prioritize.
This is NOT the list of schools that CPS is closing. I repeat, this is NOT the list of schools that CPS is closing.
This is CPS’ list of schools sorted on one variable..the Space Utilization Index from THEIR formula (not the Apples to Apples adjustment), recently released by CPS.
Because it’s interesting.
CPS List of CPS Schools from SY2012-2013 sorted on Space Utilization Index
CPS List of CPS Schools from SY2012-13 sorted on Space Utilization Index: Just Elementary & Middle Schools
Map and CPS List of CPS Schools from SY2012-2013 Just Elementary & Middle Schools with MORE THAN 49% UNDER-UTILIZATION and Enrollment Trending Negatively, Sorted on Most Costly to Maintain/Update
I DO NOT like seeing Chopin in Humboldt Park on that last list. That is the #1 School on my Rising Tide Schools list of CPS Elementary Schools with more than 65% low-income students, a school that has been taking kids from low test scores to high test scores between 3rd and 8th grade. Do. Not. Like. That’s all of the editorializing I’ll do on this post.
Just a thought… most organizations would consider facility costs on a per person basis rather than on an absolute basis. So I’d suggest computing the per capita investment cost (cost to maintain / ideal enrollment rate) and using that as a sorting measure.