January's News You Can Use: the Right to Play; College Board lawsuit

In this issue:

  1. Our newest campaign: the Right to Play Every Day!
  2. Keep pressure on the College Board to stop illegal data sales
  3. Graduated income tax on the ballot in November

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Statement for ISBE FY2021 budget hearings on assessment expenditures

The Illinois State Board of Education held four meetings this fall around the state to gather input on its budget for fiscal year 2021. You can see the budget for FY2020 as enacted here. Below you can read the testimony we submitted about our concerns about the funds to be appropriated for assessments to two test vendors, Pearson and the College Board.

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November - News You Can Use: College Board, Cullerton retiring; & more

In this issue: 

  1. College Board’s data sales — Ask your legislators for a subject matter hearing
  2. FTC looking at changing privacy rules for schools — Submit comments;
  3. President Cullerton retiring — One of the biggest obstacles in the ongoing fight for an elected board for Chicago is stepping down in January
  4. Quick links — What’s in the new contract for Chicago teachers; ISBE budget hearing & board meeting; delay on effective date for new law on IEP paperwork.

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ISBE releases new parent consent form for College Board's data grab

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) recently posted a new parental consent form for the Student Search Service survey. This is an optional questionnaire that's administered along with SAT, PSAT and Advanced Placement exams sold by the College Board.

The new consent form is inadequate in several ways, and we sent State Superintendent Carmen Ayala a letter asking ISBE to address our concerns.

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Chicagoans, cure those Ninth-Day-of-the-Strike-Unelected-School-Board Blues

It’s nine school days into a Chicago teacher and staff strike, the second day of fall veto session in Springfield, and a great time to call your state senator and ask why Chicago families are still waiting for an elected, representative school board. (Find your state senator’s phone number here!)

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Action alert HB256: Pearson can't be trusted with sensitive student data!

Next week the IL General Assembly returns to Springfield for veto session, and there's an important student data privacy bill HB256 that may be called for a vote in the Senate.

This bill would stop the IL State Board of Ed (ISBE) from requiring student teachers to videotape themselves and their students in order to get a teaching certificate in Illinois.

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October news you can use: Veto session; testing & privacy; #RedforEd in IL

In this issue: 

  1. Veto session — Call your legislators about HB256 & SB453
  2. Standardized tests and student data privacy — College Board’s data sales and Pearson’s massive breach
  3. #RedforEd — Teachers’ fight for resources around the state

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Press release: IL Legislators to AG: Investigate College Board's Sale of Student Data

Ahead of next week’s administration of the PSAT exam in schools around the state, nine Illinois state legislators are asking Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul to investigate the business practices of a major state vendor, the College Board, the standardized test maker that sells the SAT, PSAT and Advanced Placement exams.  

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CPS confirms Chicago affected by Pearson AIMSweb breach

On Wednesday September 25th, Chicago Public Schools Chief Information Officer Phil DiBartolo confirmed that Illinois' largest school district, Chicago Public Schools, was also part of the Pearson AIMSweb data breach that Pearson first announced in July.

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Our bills signed into law!

Governor Pritzker signed a slew of bills into law this past Friday—including two of our very own initiatives, student data privacy and class size goals, and three more important laws that we’ve been working on with coalitions! 

These bills' passage are the outcome of years of hard work and would not have been possible without the collective action of parents and public school supporters across Illinois!

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