Chicago's Transition to an Elected School Board
Soon Chicago will be transitioning to an elected school board from one appointed by the mayor. Here’s everything you need to know about the law that created the new board and what this means for families like yours.
Find the Best School for Your Family
Explore how to evaluate a school’s academics, whether it provides a safe and nurturing environment, how it supports students’ social and emotional needs, and the resources available for diverse learners.
Need Help Preparing for a Parent-Teacher Conference?
Here are some resources to support you in having a great conference, so you and your kid’s teachers can collaborate to ensure your kid gets a quality education.
Our Team Can Help
We believe your kid deserves access to a high-quality education. We are here to support you in making that happen by offering resources, data, and community to amplify your efforts.
Publications & Reports
We have partnered with parents to determine how to effectively hold schools accountable, bridge the digital divide, address Chicago’s enrollment crisis, and ensure all kids in Chicago can access an equitable, high-quality education.
Learn the Lingo
The education field is full of jargon and acronyms. We’re here to make those concepts clearer.
Enrichment activities and academic support offered outside of regular school hours to help students with homework, engage in extracurricular activities, and develop new skills.
Bilingual Advisory Committee (BAC)
Bilingual Advisory Committees (BACs) help parents and caregivers of English Learners (ELs) get involved in their kids’ education. BACs provide a platform for parents to advocate for the academic, social, and cultural development of all ELs.
Community Action Council (CAC)
Community Action Councils (CACs) are groups representing families, school staff, teachers, and community stakeholders to support the improvement of education within a specific community. Each CAC typically consists of 25 to 30 voting members who are directly involved in developing a strategic plan for educational success within their communities. CACs are in the following community areas: Austin, Bronzeville, Englewood, Humboldt Park- East, Humboldt Park-West, South Shore, Far South Side-Pullman/Roseland, Lawndale and Hyde Park.
Culturally Responsive Teaching
Culturally responsive teaching seeks to create a learning environment that is inclusive and respectful of all students, and incorporates the unique cultural experiences and perspectives of students from diverse backgrounds.
The content and materials used to teach students, including textbooks, lesson plans, and educational resources.
"Data-driven" refers to a decision-making approach that relies on information and evidence gathered from data analysis or information-gathering from families (and stakeholders). At K1C, being data-driven allows us to maintain objectivity, even when confronting hard truths.
English Language Learner (ELL)
A student whose primary language is not English and who is in the process of learning English as a second language.
Equitable vs. equal
“Equitable" and "equal" both relate to fairness and distribution of resources, but they are different things. “Equal” means that every student receives the same amount, regardless of needs or circumstances. “Equitable” considers the individual needs, circumstances, or differences of the students recognizing that not everyone starts from the same place and may need different levels of support to achieve the same outcome.
Activities outside of regular classroom instruction, such as sports, clubs, and arts programs.
Individualized Education Program (IEP)
A legally mandated document for students with disabilities that outlines their specific learning needs, goals, and the support they will receive.
Latine vs. Latino/a/x vs. Hispanic
K1C has opted to use “Latine” instead of “Hispanic,” or “Latino,” “Latina,” or “Latinx” because it honors the Spanish language, while also being inclusive of all gender identities. Language is complex and deeply personal. We acknowledge that some people may embrace the term "Latine" for its inclusivity, while others may still prefer "Latino" or "Hispanic" based on personal or cultural reasons.
Local School Council (LSC)
Local School Councils (LSCs) serve as a school’s governing team. Each LSC typically consists of 12 elected members. LSCs make very important decisions like selecting and evaluating the school's principal, approving the school's budget, and developing, approving and monitoring the school's Continuous Improvement Work Plan (or CIWP). They also make recommendations on certain policies and programs.
Metrics are tools that researchers and others use to measure and understand what we see in the world. K1C looks at metrics like academic performance and readiness, attendance, poverty rates, and more, and reviews changes in their metrics over time to assess progress.
Parent Advisory Councils (PAC)
Parent Advisory Councils (PACs) empower parents to serve as partners in the education of their children at schools that receive Title 1 funding. Each academic year, schools establish Parent Advisory Councils (PACs) to bring together parents and caregivers, teachers and staff, and community stakeholders to work with their school principal in the planning, design, implementation, and evaluation of the Title I Program.
A meeting between parents and teachers to discuss a child's progress, strengths, and areas needing improvement.
Policy at K1C generally involves the rules that govern our schools. Education policy includes the guidelines, laws, regulations, and decisions made by the state and federal government, Chicago Public Schools, individual schools, and/or other relevant groups. Policy shapes and guides how schools are run, including how we decide on budgets, train teachers, test students, and provide special education services.
A governing body responsible for making decisions about school policies, budgets, and other important matters.
Education stakeholders are the people who are involved in education. This includes students, parents and caregivers, teachers, school leaders, district administrators, school board members, nonprofit education partners, community members, and more. Collaboration among education stakeholders is essential for creating a public school district that meets the diverse needs of students, parents, educators, and the community as a whole.
Assessments that measure students' performance against a common set of criteria, often used to evaluate school and student achievement.
Title I Funding
Title I is a federal program that aims to provide additional financial assistance to schools and school districts with a high percentage of students from low-income families. The primary goal of Title I funding is to ensure that all students, regardless of their socioeconomic backgrounds, have access to a high-quality education and the opportunity to achieve academically. To achieve this goal, Title I provides federal funds to eligible schools and districts to support various educational services and interventions.
Comprehensive support programs designed to address a wide range of students' academic, social, emotional, and health needs. These services recognize that a student's success in school is influenced by various factors both inside and outside the classroom. Wraparound services aim to provide holistic support to help students overcome barriers to learning and thrive academically.
The K1C team listened to me and hundreds of other Chicago Public Schools (CPS) parents, and then they rolled up their sleeves and got to work on finding a solution [to Chicago’s digital divide].
—Claiborne Wade, Austin Community Area Parent