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[Xmca-l] I'm pleased to say that I wrote Mayor Emanuel's nomination letter


Past Recipients of the NCTE Doublespeak Award

Chicago Mayor Rham Emanuel
For his "reform" rhetoric in his management of the Chicago public schools, in particular his plan to close
over 50 schools for "underutilization" of space. As described in the Washington Post:

Emanuel plans to close 54 public elementary schools at the end of the 2012-13 school year. The
reason, he says, is because the schools are "underutilized." He bases that claim on an esoteric -
and deeply flawed - Chicago Public Schools space utilization formula. It's a formula, for
example, that will peg a school's utilization as "efficient" (rather than "overcrowded") if that
school has 36 students in each of its "allotted homerooms." Using that same formula, a CPS
elementary school with just 23 kids in each of its "allotted homerooms" would find itself on the
district's "underutilized" list, which, in 2013, is the first step on the road to being shut down.

The article goes on to note that "At the mayor's kids' school, however, elementary classes are
considered 'full"' if there are 23 students in the classroom." The mayor's children attend the private
University of Chicago Lab School, once attended by the mayor's pal Arne Duncan. In the public schools,
however, as the mayor's Communications Officer Becky Carroll stated, "It's the quality of teaching in
that classroom. You could have a teacher that is high-quality that could take 40 kids in a class and help
them succeed." No problem, as long as it's somebody else's kids in jam-packed classes in deteriorating,
if well "utilized," classrooms. Mayor Emanuel surely deserves this prestigious award for his embodiment
of Orwell's vision of a rhetorically fraudulent society.