Chicago Public Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard, CPS Board Members and members of the CPS leadership team joined Track R school communities across the District to launch the new school year and the Full School Day. Since reaching a landmark agreement with the Chicago Teachers Union on the full day in July, which included the addition of 477 new teaching positions, more than 140,000 kids who started school in August have been in the classroom benefiting from more quality time with their teachers. More than 250,000 CPS students began the Full School Day with the start of Track R schools.
“This is a momentous day in the history of CPS as every child throughout Chicago now has access to a quality school day and year, putting them on a path to success in school and life,” said CPS CEO Jean-Claude Brizard. “Every student deserves the opportunity to stay in the classroom and take advantage of all the Full School Day has to offer.”
CEO Brizard visited Clemente Community Academy High School located in Humboldt Park. With the additional time provided by the Full School Day, all students at Clemente are receiving the equivalent of an additional full class period in math and English four days a week. Students who are on track to graduate at Clemente also are receiving an additional class period of enrichment including fine arts, health and wellness, AP supports, medical science and photography, and recovery options are now available to those who need extra help to get back on track to graduate.
As Clemente illustrates, the Full School Day looks different at each school, as each principal and school community has been given the resources and flexibility to structure a quality school day that best meets the unique needs of their student body. At an average neighborhood elementary school, the students are receiving a daily average of:
- 20 additional minutes in reading
- 30 additional minutes in intervention with adaptive technology
- 15 additional minutes in math
- 10 additional minutes in enrichment
- 25 minutes of recess (previously students did not have time for recess)
The implementation of the Full School Day encompassed a year-long planning effort to ensure a thoughtful, engaging, and seamless transition to the new Full School Day and year. Examples of preparation and supports schools received for the implementation of the Full School Day included:
- Pioneer Schools piloted the Full School Day in the 2011-2012 school year, providing more than 22,000 students in 50 schools with additional time, primarily focused in core subjects like reading, math and science as well as enrichment such as art, music and PE. Lessons learned from Pioneer Schools were used to guide schools across the District in planning their Full School Day.
- Extensive training and support has been provided to schools and networks by both Central Office and external experts such as the National Center for Time and Learning. This included more than 38 training sessions for principals across the District, as well as expert scheduling support provided to any schools requesting additional guidance.
- Full School Day Planning Committees were convened at every school to engage teachers, LSC members, students, parents, community members, etc. in the planning process and implementation of the Full School Day.
- Full School Day Guidelines that for the first time provide minimum benchmarks for instructional time provided to students to ensure they will receive quality time with teachers in core subjects like reading, math and science to better prepare them for college and career. Additional resources provided to support schools in implementing the Full School Day included the College Ready Guide and Recess Guide.
- $130 million in additional discretionary funding to give principals and schools communities the flexibility to structure a day that best meets the unique needs of their student body, as well as 477 additional positions to support schools in implementation of the school day.