Mayor Emanuel and CPS Expand of High Quality Academics at Eight Schools 


Investments Increase Early College STEM Programs and Nation’s Largest IB Network to Prepare Students in Every Neighborhood for College Success
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Tuesday, March 27, 2018

CPS Office of Communications
(773) 553-1620—office

CHICAGO – Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools are expanding high quality academics in seven neighborhoods with 3,800 more students at eight schools getting access to proven programs like International Baccalaureate (IB) and Early College STEM (Science Technology Math and Engineering). 

Through these new investments, four elementary schools and one neighborhood high school will become the latest schools in the city to offer high quality IB programming. Additionally, three high schools will transform into Early College STEM schools that leverage external partnerships to prepare students for the technology careers of the future.

“Programs like IB and STEM provide students with access to the rigorous coursework necessary for success in college and career,” said Mayor Emanuel. “Chicago’s students are making tremendous progress, and we are proud to make critical investments that enable them to build 21st century skills today that help them succeed in college and secure the jobs of tomorrow.”
 
“CPS schools have never been better, and one of the keys to success is expanding access in every neighborhood to high quality academic programs that prepare students for success,” said CPS CEO Janice K. Jackson. "By expanding IB and STEM at eight neighborhood schools, we will provide more of our students with rigorous 21st century curriculum and an academic foundation that will allow them to compete with the nation’s best.”

Both IB and STEM programs help students get college and career credit while they’re still in high school, and this neighborhood investment will move the district closer to Mayor Emanuel’s goal of 50 percent of graduating seniors earning college and career credit by 2019. Last year, more than 43 percent of CPS graduates earned one or more college or career credentials through IB, AP, dual enrollment and other rigorous programs – representing a 39 percent increase since 2014. 

Expanding Neighborhood International Baccalaureate Programs
Chicago is already the nation’s largest IB network of schools, offering instruction from Pre-K through graduation. This investment will expand IB programming to an additional 1,800 students, at four elementary schools and one neighborhood high school. Information about each school’s expansion can be found below: 

School: Amundsen High School
Neighborhood: Lincoln Square/Ravenswood 
Program: IB Expansion, Middle Years Programme (MYP), Wall-to-Wall
Grades Served: 9-12
Launch Year: 2019-20 School Year

School: Belding Elementary School
Neighborhood: Old Irving Park
Program: New IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)
Grades Served: 6-8
Feeder: Schurz High School
Launch Year: 2019-20 School Year

School: Fiske Elementary School
Neighborhood: Woodlawn
Program: Expansion of IB, Primary Years Programme (PYP) 
Grades Served: PK-8, Wall-to-Wall 
Feeder: Hyde Park High School 
Launch Year: 2019-20 School Year

School: Little Village Elementary School 
Neighborhood: Little Village
Program: New IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)
Grades Served: 6-8
Feeder: Juarez
Launch Year: 2019-20 School Year

School: Pickard Elementary School 
Neighborhood: Pilsen/Heart of Chicago
Program: New IB Middle Years Programme (MYP)
Grades Served: 6-8
Feeder: Juarez
Launch Year: 2019-20 School Year

As a result of these investments, all of the PK-8 students at Fiske, and all students in grades 6-8 at Belding, Little Village and Pickard will be exposed to high-quality IB programming. In turn, these students will be prepared for the rigorous curriculum at the neighborhood high schools that offer IB programs. 

Amundsen High School will also expand its Middle Years Programme (MYP) to make it a Wall-to-Wall IB school so that every Amundsen student will benefit from IB Programming. Wall-to-Wall IB high schools provide every freshman and sophomore with an IB Middle Years education. At the completion of the sophomore year, students can choose from multiple IB course paths to support their academic and career goals. By providing every 9th and 10th grader with MYP instruction and offering all 11th and 12th graders a pathway to engage with higher-level IB coursework, every student at Wall-to-Wall IB schools are able to engage in rigorous instruction that will prepare them for future success.

The MYP curriculum is structured around eight subject areas designed to prepare students for future success: science, mathematics, language acquisition, language and literature, individuals and societies, physical and health education, art, and design. 

CPS is investing in IB programming in neighborhoods throughout the city because it has led to improved academic outcomes. As a result of the City’s commitment to IB:  
  • CPS has established the nation’s largest IB network, with 56 schools (22 high schools and 34 elementary schools) serving more than 16,000 students across the city;
  •  The number of students taking IB exams has nearly tripled since 2011, growing from 740 to 2,006 students in 2017; 
  •  The number of IB exams taken increased by more than 168 percent; and 
  •  The success rate on IB exams – scores of “4” or above, triggering college credit – has increased from 45.9 percent in 2010 to 54.6 percent in 2017.

Expanding Early College STEM in Three Neighborhoods 
Three CPS high schools will become Early College STEM Schools, meaning an additional 2,000 students will be able to access 21st century STEM curriculum, earn college credit and work toward an associate degree while still in high school. Information about each school can be found below: 

School: Crane Medical Preparatory High School
Neighborhood: Near West Side
Program: Early College STEM 
Grades Served: 9-12
Launch Year: 2018-19 School Year

School: Infinity High School
Neighborhood: Little Village
Program: Early College STEM
Grades Served: 9-12
Launch Year: 2018-19 School Year

School: Solorio Academy
Neighborhood: Gage Park
Program: Early College STEM 
Grades Served: 9-12
Launch Year: 2018-19 School Year

Each ECSS school will be paired with both a City College and an industry leader that will help develop unique curriculum to prepare students for careers in science and technology. External partners will also provide mentorship programming, internships, and other work-based experiences for students. Through these unique programs, students will graduate prepared to explore careers in science and technology and with early college and career credentials that give them a head-start on their college degree.

“Working in partnership with leading technology companies and CPS, we already see early college STEM school students graduating high school having made progress towards a City Colleges degree," said Chancellor Juan Salgado. "With the expansion of this program, many more Chicagoans will gain early exposure to college-level STEM courses and build a path to transfer, internships and in-demand jobs in lucrative STEM fields.” 

Solorio, Infinity, and Crane will become Early College STEM Schools beginning in the 2018-19 school year, which will bring the total number of ECSS High Schools to eight. Partnership agreements with external partners and City Colleges are being finalized and will be announced later this school year. 

Chicago Public Schools serves 371,000 students in 646 schools. It is the nation’s third-largest school district.  

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Page Last Modified on Tuesday, March 27, 2018