The Next Generation: Chicago's Children 

Chicago Public Schools 2013-18 Action Plan

This action plan – The Next Generation: Chicago's Children – was developed after listening carefully to the concerns of thousands of citizens and civic leaders across the City of Chicago. We have heard from parents and community members, from principals and teachers, religious leaders and business leaders, elected officials and philanthropists.

This 5-year plan is not intended to sit on a shelf. It is an action roadmap to achieving our vision of a high-quality education for every child in the district. Within this framework we have outlined strategies that will be refined and strengthened as we move forward in response to your feedback, to lessons learned along the way, and to new insights into how best to achieve our collective goals.

At CPS, our vision is that every student in every neighborhood will be engaged in a rigorous, well-rounded instructional program and will graduate prepared for success in college, career and life.

Click on each pillar below to read each section of the plan, or click here to download the full CPS 2013-18 Action Plan.

High Standards, Rigorous Curriculum and Powerful Instruction

We must go beyond the basics to ensure that all children become critical-thinkers, effective communicators and responsible global citizens. The definition of core instruction must be expanded to include the arts, health, physical education and extracurricular activities.

Systems of Support that Meet Student Needs

High expectations for all students must be coupled with a holistic approach that supports the individual needs of each. We must also remove barriers to learning with practices that promote children's health and safety, social and emotional development, school attendance and college and career preparation.

Engaged and Empowered Families and Communities

Parents must be empowered as leaders who can advocate for their children and for all the community's children. School and district leaders must be resourceful in identifying community partners who can support children's growth and learning.

Committed and Effective Teachers, Leaders and Staff

Our teachers, principals and administrators will be valued and developed, will hold themselves accountable and will be rewarded for success. We must ensure we are the place where the best talent comes to work.

Sound Fiscal, Operational and Accountability Systems

Priorities that lead to student success must drive planning, spending and accountability at the school and district level. Everyone who works for the district needs to be held accountable for student outcomes and also provided with useful data and guidance in working toward those goals.

What city and education leaders are saying about "The Next Generation: Chicago's Children"

As a city, the most important thing we can do is make sure we offer a bright future for the next generation, and a critical component is ensuring that every child in this city has an education that matches their full potential. This comprehensive action plan provides a strategic roadmap for achieving this goal, grounded in the idea that with teachers and principals, engaged parents and supportive communities working together, our children can succeed.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel

The Chicago Public Schools action plan is a critical step toward establishing and solidifying a culture of accountability and measurable results for the children who we serve everyday. On behalf of the Chicago Board of Education, we support and look forward to partnering with the CEO to execute this plan that will help ensure that the District's focus remains on creating and sustaining a high-quality education system for all students.

BOE President David Vitale

At last there is a comprehensive, long-term plan for improving and enhancing public education in the Great City of Chicago. That plan—“The Next Generation: Chicago’s Children”—is a comprehensive blueprint for reform that has all the elements of successful urban school improvement: High standards, supports for students, engaged families and communities, effective and committed teachers, and strong fiscal, operational, and accountability systems. The new roadmap for the future calls for more rigorous instructional standards, better professional development aligned to those standards, safe learning environments that support the social-emotional needs of children, strengthened personnel evaluation systems, extended learning time, and transparency that will reach into every corner of the city. Most importantly, the new plan is based on the best research about what works and is a comprehensive and seamless set of strategies built to move public education forward on behalf of the city’s children for the long haul. The community has every reason to be optimistic and believe that the school system is finally on the right track and moving forward in the right direction.

Michael Casserly, Executive Director, Council on Great City Schools

I applaud the release of the Chicago Public Schools 2013 – 2018 Action Plan: “The Next Generation: Chicago’s Children” that provides a compelling vision and comprehensive strategy to advance student achievement for all students. This plan places rigorous standards and high expectations at the forefront and emphasizes the essential role of high quality instruction to achieve results in our neighborhood schools. The Action Plan is based on more than twenty years of solid research and the five essential supports validated by the Consortium for Chicago School Research. With relentless and constancy of focus to plan implementation CPS schools will realize significant continuous improvement over time.

Terry Mazany, President & CEO, Chicago Community Trust