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Today, Mayor Emanuel announced that the Academy for Urban School Leadership (AUSL), will double the number of AUSL teaching academies from seven to 14 within the next two years. This will allow 200 residents to be trained and prepared to teach in some of Chicago’s most challenging schools.
“AUSL has made immediate and significant impacts on their turnaround schools, as evidenced year after year with encouraging test score gains,” Mayor Emanuel said. “Expanding successful models like this will help us give our children a world-class education in communities that many thought didn’t have a chance to succeed.”
While speaking at the 2011 Commencement Ceremony at National-Louis University (NLU), Emanuel also announced AUSL will take immediate steps to positively impact students across Chicago. In conjunction with NLU, AUSL will augment its teacher training program for the upcoming 2011-2012 school year, bringing their total to 94 aspiring teachers.
“I am excited at the prospects of this program and I am excited that a University like yours is taking proactive steps to ensure that more of Chicago’s students have a chance to sit where you are sitting today,” said Emanuel.
Preliminary data from the Illinois Standards Achievement Test (ISAT) show that test score gains at AUSL schools, which formerly were among the lowest performing in Chicago, are twice that of the CPS average. AUSL’s five elementary schools showed ISAT score gains of nearly 7.9 percentage points while the CPS average was 3.8 percentage points.
In a turnaround, a new administration and staff are brought into a school that has traditionally underperformed. As an example, the Morton School of Excellence on the West Side had the lowest scores in the entire CPS District before being designated for turnaround in 2008.
AUSL worked with Morton School staff and a significant number of AUSL teacher residents were placed at that school. One year into the turnaround process, the percent of students meeting or exceeding ISAT score standards went from 33 percent to 49 percent. After the second year, students meeting or exceeding ISAT standards jumped from 49 percent to 74 percent.
Across Chicago, AUSL schools show 68.0 percent of students who meet or exceed state standards on the ISAT. The CPS Office of School Improvement, which also manages two turnaround schools, showed 56.0 percent of students meeting or exceeding state standards, an increase of 6.8 percentage points from 2010.