Hit the Road Jack

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Ah, the iconic Ray Charles. One would think he was almost prophetic when you ponder the slew of school closings by the inimitable CPS district. In all reality, who would want to imitate them? I digress. Without getting heavy into the real data behind the trumped propaganda the public is being fed (by the shovel full, no less), let’s do a brief recap.

  • CPS stated they were in a $775 million-dollar deficit (or is it a billion?). Ok, lots of red ink.
  • CPS schools were studied for utilization, and found to be under-utilized.
  • Schools would be closed to ease the deficit, and other schools would be combined so they can be filled to capacity.
  • The proposed savings were estimated to be a few hundred million (Hey, if CPS can be fuzzy with numbers, so can I)
  • The general public found out that new math does exist; the proposed savings were over-estimated by about $23 million.
  • 850 teaching personnel and supporting staff were given their walking papers.
  • Those staff were deemed “low-performing.”
  • 600 new personnel will be hired to ensure safe passage for students traveling to schools outside of their neighborhood during the 2013-2014 school year.
  • Chicago Teachers’ Union President Karen Lewis is having several conniptions, resulting in rather ugly name calling of Mayor Emanuel and Barbara Byrd Bennett.

None of these actions really address issues of systemic poverty, the prison pipeline, low achievement of children of color, or teacher retention and increased parental involvement. If all else fails, blame teachers and close schools. That should work out just fine. I thought the lyrics were apropos, so I’m reprinting them here.

Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more.
Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more. (What you say?)
Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more.
Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.

Oh! Woman, oh woman, don’t treat me so mean,
You’re the meanest old woman that I’ve ever seen.
I guess if you said so
I’d have to pack my things and go. (That’s right)

Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more.
Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.

Now baby, listen baby, don’t-a treat me this-a way
Cause I’ll be back on my feet some day.

Don’t care if you do ’cause it’s understood
You ain’t got no money you just ain’t no good.

Well, I guess if you say so
I have to pack my things and go. (That’s right)

Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more, no more, no more, no more.
Hit the road Jack and don’t you come back no more.

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