CPS head: 'Create great schools' for every child
Kamren Bedenfield, 13, fills out forms on his mom Misti Johnson's back during the 5th annual New Schools Expo on Saturday. (Brian Cassella, Chicago Tribune / January 28, 2012)
Chicago Public Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard used the event to emphasize that the best school options come in improving neighborhood campuses rather than on increasing the number that have selective enrollment.
“I think as a community we’re a bit too obsessed with selective enrollment,” Brizard said during the New Schools Expo, where he nonetheless praised existing selective enrollment schools such as Whitney Young Magnet High School.
“What we have to do, folks, is create great schools for kids, not matter where they are,” Brizard said.
Prior to his talk, Brizard addressed some recent controversy surrounding Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s school agenda.
He said he had not heard about protesters being paid by ministers to speak in favor of the mayor’s schools plan, but if it was happening, “of course it’s not appropriate.”
Chicago Public Schools Inspector General James Sullivan said last week that his office was looking into whether Rev. Roosevelt Watkins, who has received CPS contracts, has wrongly paid people to speak out at forums on school issues.
Watkins has denied any wrongdoing.