Chicago Public Schools Undertaking Ambitious Effort to Expand Learning Time District-Wide
With more than 600 schools participating, the Chicago Public Schools is taking on the nation’s most ambitious effort to date to expand learning time district-wide. Early this school year, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools CEO Jean-Claude Brizard issued the challenge to Chicago’s schools to increase school time from an average of 5-hour- and-45-minute day to a 7-hour day in order to improve student achievement and provide a well-rounded educational experience for all of Chicago’s 435,000 students. With NCTL’s guidance, supported in part by The Chicago Public Education Fund, Chicago Public Schools has been working with its network superintendents to implement a school-based planning process to help schools rethink and expand their school day.
While there are important details yet to be determined, the Full School Day initiative is moving towards implementation, with the support of 66 percent of parents of Chicago Public Schools students. By studying Chicago’s early adopters, such as Chicago’s Pioneer Schools, NCTL continues to learn from those on the ground to further inform the larger district roll-out. NCTL is also partnering with the VIVA Teacher Project, a unique initiative that empowers teachers to have a voice in the process.