As most readers know, Rahm Emanuel is favored to become the next Mayor of Chicago, where there is mayoral control of public schools.
In his response to the question “Please explain how you would encourage more parental involvement in the public schools. Do you support tying parental involvement to school funding or what schools should remain open?” he said he wanted a parent “trigger,” parents should sign contracts with teachers saying what they are going to do to support their children’s learning, and give parents report cards on individual schools.
It’s all “transactional,” looking at punishment, rewards, demands (see Being ‘Transactional’ Versus Being ‘Transformational’ in Schools). None of it is “transformational.”
How about finding resources to support teachers making home visits to parents of their students to get to know them? How about directing city resources so that schools could provide supportive social services to families, like they do in the Harlem Children’s Zone? How about encouraging schools to connect with other local neighborhood institutions to identify and respond to broader community problems (safety, affordable housing, etc.) that affect family’s lives and student learning?
Why am I not holding my breath?
Rahm becoming mayor would be the worst thing that could happen to the regular folks of Chicago. Rahm has no understanding or interest in making life better for Chicagoans. His aim is to figure out how he can profit from government service while making his campaign contributors from the financial services industry even wealthier.