CPS students catch Emanuel with inaccurate statistics; make video

6 Feb

By Christine Hurley

Mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel argued in a recent debate funding for charter schools was justified, based on student performances and the failure of public schools to match their success. “When you take out Northside and you take out Walter Payton, the seven best performing high schools are all charter schools,” said Emanuel.

Wrong, say students from one of those very Chicago public high schools the candidate dissed.

While Emanuel’s comment went largely unchallenged in the mainstream media, three Sullivan HS students and alums, Cristina Henriquez, Gerardo Aguilar and Alexandra Alvarez, caught the gaffe and went to YouTube to set the record straight.

The students cite The Chicago Tribune for their statistics, and say none of the top seven overall performing high schools in the city are charter.

According to the video the top seven performing high schools, in order of rank, are: Northside College Prep High School, Walter Payton College Prep, Whitney M. Young Magnet High School, William Jones College Prep, Albert G. Lane Tech College Prep High School, Gwendolyn Brooks College Prep Academy and Lincoln Park High School.

The only neighborhood school in the list is LPHS. The other schools are “selective enrollment.” Students take academic performance evaluations to qualify for these schools.

A DePolitics1011 query to the Emanuel campaign for a response went unanswered.

The Sullivan students who made the video wanted to draw attention to the need to invest in the 400,000 students who attend neighborhood schools—not charters.

Henriquez, Aguilar and Alvarez made the video with the aid of DePaul University student Jackie Rosa, who works with the Mikva Challenge, a non-partisan, non-profit nonpartisan organization that teams with local high schools to help educate students about the political process.

Rosa, says she used her knowledge from debate at DePaul to help the students refute Emanuel’s statement and express their support for Miguel del Valle in the video.

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