Evan Plummer, CPS Director of Arts, sent a letter yesterday to AAEP teachers and staff apologizing for the “miscommunication” regarding closure of the program.
He writes, “The truth is, while modifications to this program are being considered, no decision has been made to end or modify the Advanced Arts Program.”
Teachers say things were a little more complicated than a simple miscommunication. WTTW’s Nick Blumberg reports on Chicago Tonight’s blog:
After informing staff on Jan. 22 that McElroy had been laid off, CPS’ Evan Plummer told them there would be another meeting on Monday. Teachers say they were informed the Advanced Arts Program would end after the current semester wraps up in June. Plummer told them all the students in the program would be informed Tuesday of McElroy’s layoff and the shuttering of AAP.
But shortly before the Tuesday meeting, teachers say Plummer pulled them aside and told them students would only be informed about McElroy – not about the end of the program. Teachers were asked not to inform their students AA[E]P was ending.
Friday, Plummer’s letter to teachers significantly walked back the cancellation.
My goodness. That sure is soooome kind of miscommunication. Read the rest of Blumberg’s piece here.
Look, what I told WTTW is how I truly feel: if CPS wants to spin this as a miscommunication, and that means the program is still up and running, then by all means a miscommunication is a best-case scenario here. Sure, great, call it a miscommunication. I have my own speculations and concerns about what “modifications” means, because when CPS uses that word it is rarely for the better.
Make no mistake, teens and youth and families care about this program. And we are paying very, very close attention right now. If CPS so much as breathes a sentence about cancelling this program, we are going to have something to say about it.
There can be no miscommunication about that.