Burdick-Will, Julia. “Neighborhood Violent Crime and Academic Growth in Chicago:
Lasting Effects of Early Exposure.” Social Forces, vol. 95, no. 1, Sept. 2016, pp.
133-157. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1093/SF/sow041.
This article takes into account early age factors that go into affecting the growth of poorer inner-city children in Chicago. Firstly, it is laid out as a literature review and research going into the schools of thought and possible variables that may affect the data. The author goes into citing both scholars within education to the crime statistics of the city itself. The author’s primary claim in all this is how early exposure to violence causes a number of disadvantages later on in life. Following with this, the author cites psychological stress, protective behavior, and community interaction as the mains point as to why this is the case. An alternate result in the research had to do with how violence was the leading factor rather than simply race.
As critiques go, the study dutifully reported on all the limitations and facts it could. The step-by-step process of writing left little room for questions. However, some points were not as fleshed out. Although the quantitative facts on the success of the students was well-documented, the research on the parent’s something that left me wondering. In the conclusion, the author mentions how both early interactions made by students and parents had lasting effects. I wonder, what sort of influence does a parent have on the household? Considering marriage rates within the area, what can data tell about that as a possible factor in this study?
- “However, there are no significant interactions between neighborhood violence and any of the available covariates, such as gender, race, initial achievement, or neighborhood demographics (not shown). This may come as a surprise to those who rightly expect that African American students are the only ones exposed to the most extreme levels of violence” (149).
- “These models show that students in violent neighborhoods grow substantially slower than those in less violent neighborhoods by about two-thirds of a point per year for reading and three-quarters of a point per year for math” (148).
- “By the end of junior year, the gap based on one standard deviation of neighborhood violence has grown to approximately one-tenth of a standard deviation for reading and more than one-sixth of a standard deviation for math” (150).
This source in particular is far more research-based and will provide numbers to back up claims. It will also act as a case study to be made when looking into particular incidents.
Gill, Andrea M. K. “Moving to Integration? The Origins of Chicago’s Gautreaux
Program and the Limits of Voucher-Based Housing Mobility.” Journal of Urban History, vol. 38, no. 4, July 2012, pp. 662-686. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1177/0096144211428771.
A look into a renowned historical case of Gautreaux, however, delves more so into the implications it brought rather than the specific data that came from it. Even going beyond the simple case, the author reports on attitudes as a whole past it. For while the program saw with it success for the students, so too were the families thrust into an entirely new and hostile environment. The author’s approach to the study is very critical, their point, in particular, is to show where the program itself failed or lacked in. While it was publicized as a success and step toward integration, it too had numerous limitations.
The writing Gill contributed compounded with Kaufman and Rosenbaum working well together in regards to one side showing the incidents strength and the other showing the weaknesses. Alone, the author’s thoughts persuade the reader to disregard the event. For the sake of the argument, the need to cite the stronger points of the instance and then add in the critical analysis would dutifully tell the reader how valuable the study can be toward solving the current issue. As the good majority of the writing is centered on the negatives, there is a lack of solutions. As such, I would ask despite its limitations, what can the study do for Chicago? Should one disregard such studies on the basis of the criteria listed?
- A man in Wilmette (Cook County) noted that “[p]eople are very uncomfortable with dark skin around,” adding that his son was stopped and questioned by police on his way to school after a neighbor phoned the authorities saying that “a suspicious man passed her house.” (673-674)
- Finally, part of the appeal of the Gautreaux program as a “success story” lay in its invisibility and the limited numbers of poor people of color who could move into any one neighborhood. (675)
- Neighborhoods whose property values were intimately linked to their racial homogeneity would simply be too expensive for low-income families relying on federal rent certificates. (671)
The utility of this study is to balance the other study used on the actual incident and the numbers that back it. The Gautreaux program will be the main contention and needs to be stressed critically.
Farmer-Hinton, Raquel L. “The Chicago Context: Understanding the Consequences of
Urban Processes on School Capacity.” The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 71,
no. 4, 2002, pp. 313–330. JSTOR, JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/3211183.
With a thorough list of reasons why the current standard for Blacks within Chicago, the authors bring forth sources to both show percent of who is affected and the context of recent events. They seek to argue that the social inequalities African Americans face within the city are stemmed from the housing segregation which leads Black students to worse off schools, like when citing the number of children in poverty in certain areas. They continue by saying that the inequality holding them back now leads on into later life and forbids class mobility. I recognize that they favor the idea of reformation as to be a key to solving the task.
Ironically enough, the inkling of their solution is a factor in what holds back this source. Since it was written in 2002, it lacks in the most recent reforms and cannot possibly know of the mayoral change that took place in recent history. As the authors both stress the importance of legislation, it would be moot to use the political situation of then and bring it up in the present. They look toward future school reforms, and that point in and of itself is obsolete by present knowledge of the topic. The statistics too likely changed over the past fifteen years, though this can be remedied by simply saying that this is a historical case study on the city rather than the present fact.
- In the 1960s and 1970s, the poverty rate in cities like Chicago escalated among African Americans while the poverty rate among Whites stayed relatively stable (Katz, 1989; Wilson, 1987). In addition, poor African Americans were more likely to live among other poor African Americans, whereas poor Whites were more likely to live in income-variant neighborhoods (Massey & Denton, 1993). (319)
- For example, in 1970, African Americans in Chicago were more likely than Whites to live in geographically concentrated neighborhoods (26% vs. 9%, respectively). By 1980, there was a disproportionate increase in the proportion of African Americans in geographically concentrated neighborhoods than whites (11% vs. 2%, respectively). (320)
- However, schools actually contributed to the socioeconomic isolation of communities through the lack of relational qualities of schools, specifically damaged by disproportionately high staff transience, low staff morale, and limited instructional resources (Payne, 1984). (321)
- This is problematic since urban residents often flee the central cities in the hopes of finding improved living conditions and schools
The utility of this source draws on its copious amounts of data cited and a clear layout of a past problem than how it still lingers today. The study will do well in adding context to more specific terms to be brought up later on.
Kaufman, Julie E., and James E. Rosenbaum. “The Education and Employment of Low-
Income Black Youth in White Suburbs.” Educational Evaluation and Policy
Analysis, vol. 14, no. 3, 1992, pp. 229–240. JSTOR, JSTOR,
The source in question is a more dated source that takes to a historical case in particular that happened in the past. The author looks into the Gautreaux Lawsuit wherein they describe the case of desegregation within Chicago some time back. Using the experiences of the thousands of black students affected by this opportunity, they followed the academic results and compared them to that of their misfortunate counterparts. Their point on the matter is on the Relative Disadvantage Hypothesis and testing it through the results shown by the incident, disproving it in their conclusion at how suburban counterparts triumphed in education. I found their mentions of the hypothesis to be a great factor in tying together such a broad set of results.
As for where problems lie in the study, the major issue that troubled me as the reader was the context of the time. While written over twenty years ago, the idea of academic standards within suburban schools was confusing even for someone who graduated from one. While similar pressures may exist in this current era, the quote used at the end by one of the mothers on counseling was very prevalent for current students. It is there that I ask how do such services affect students? And to add on, what was the standard given toward academics at the time? After all, my parents both spoke of how education was less stressful for themselves, and they were in a generation between myself and the students involved in the study.
- “Thus, Gautreaux students who are able to gain employment experience or attend college are improving their chances to have more options when they are adults than is typical for low-income minority urban populations” (233).
- “The Supreme Court’s consent decree in 1976 led to the Gautreaux program, a unique remedy whose purpose was to redress the discriminatory nature of Chicago’s public housing program” (229).
- “A significantly higher percentage of suburb- movers than city-movers were in college tracks (40.3% suburbs vs. 23.5% city; p < .05, n = 106). Gender had no effect on track (t = 0.03), and controlling for gender had no influence on the suburban effect” (234).
The utility of this case is far more useful for small-n research, such as studying case by case rather than simply relying on the data. While population stats are noted thoroughly, the research is clearly dated. However, it shows a great deal of history and proves where it can be built upon.
Klinger, John “Understanding Illinois’ Broken Education Funding System.” Illinois
Policy, 24 August 2017 https://www.illinoispolicy.org/reports/understanding-illinois-broken-education-funding-system/
A short piece on how Illinois’ current education spending is seen right now. As the formula allows for specific areas to receive ample funding from the state, the author argues the need for immediate change. Rather than keep the power in the hands of politicians, the spending should be the right of parents. The author does caveat by saying that the need to do a complete change is unnecessary, but rather to instead to look toward its neighbors. Nonetheless, it is clear to me as the reader that Klinger recognizes a significant problem in the distribution and seeks to fix the system before the number of poor students continues to rise once more.
As it is a shorter piece, there are many limitations to be had. While the author devoted enough time and research toward the first half of the piece which includes graphs and analysis, the latter half on how to solve the matter does less for the reader. The solution he listed lacks in any implicit outside research to back it up. At the very least, his solution does raise more areas to look to when dealing with the matter, like mentioning how neighboring cities are managing despite sharing a similar geographic location.
- “These formula changes have disproportionately benefited Chicago, Cook County, and its collar counties. Today, more than 90 percent of Chicago students are considered poor – in 2000, only 44 percent of Chicago students were considered poor.”
- “In 2013, a majority of more than $500 million in special state education subsidies related to property wealth went to just 40 districts – all in Cook County and its collar counties.”
- “Throughout the GSA formulas, however, are special laws and loopholes districts can take advantage of to underreport their property wealth.”
While dealing little with race or socioeconomic positions, the basis of Illinois’ spending is something that needs to be better explained. While simplistic, it is the first step toward understanding how the Illinois budget works in terms of education.
Lemmer, Thomas “An analysis of policy responses to gangs in Chicago.” Police Practice and Research 9.5 (2008): 417-430
A very in-depth look into Police tactics in response to gangs, the author’s purpose in this piece centered greatly around how the Chicago police department managed to get the number of murders lowered a good amount. The author highlights the tactics ranging from addressing firearms to drugs. He also establishes the dire situation that plagues the city currently and how it has been an ongoing problem for police officers. The journal sticks to the point of responding to gang violence, and only really lumps in other forms when the number contributed to gangs is ambiguous.
The journal only really extends to the police side of matters, using only statistical analysis toward murder rates and having the majority of analysis on strategies over attitudes. For that reason, the question of public perceptions of officers is raised. With current events too, it is a wonder how such actions are viewed by the community, especially the students who are stuck between success and failure. For that reason, I ask how does the police image affect non-gang members living in the area? Do they push them toward gangs rather than away? It is clear that the author makes note of positive effects, yet the matter of local individual’s opinions is not included.
- “As evidenced by the CPD’s successful implementation of its renowned approach to community policing, by 2003 the CPD had already demonstrated an ability to effectively undertake substantial organizational change” (428).
- “In so doing, the CPD answered Bensinger’s call (1984) for a comprehensive approach to the gang problem, ‘rather than repeated gang-related police reorganizations,’ through reorganization” (428).
- In May 2002, the CPD and ATF expanded their partnership through a US Attorney’s Office initiative called Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). A core element of PSN is the aggressive enforcement of strict federal gun statutes dealing with the possession and use of firearms in the four CPD districts with the highest levels of drug dealing and gang violence” (423).
The purpose of including this section is to show an extreme solution to the matter of delinquency. As referenced in other articles, it is violence that be a deciding factor toward academic failure for inner-city Black children.
Lipman, Pauline and Haines, Nathan “From Accountability to Privatization and African American Exclusion.” Educational Policy 21.3 (2007): 471-502
It is a critical look into the recent reforms started by Mayor Daley in two thousand-four. It shows wherein lied the problems of such reforms, a specific example being the corporate interests to be had within them. Rather than simply argue why it was not perfect, they discuss the location of the problem. By allowing for business leeway into the government matter, the communities themselves were ignored. Their purpose in the matter came with such criticism, in highlighting how giving the Commercial Club control only made matters worse. They too show how such a decision lead to the divisive topic of gentrification, sampling poor neighborhoods as being remade for richer folks.
All in all, the research does well to leave most questions answered. Though if anything were to come to mind, I would ask is how do communities seek to better change the matter? And depending upon their solution, how would the city or state go about implementing the idea? The topic of education within Chicago has much to do with a wealth gap that is far more favorable for the people in power. To be able to redistribute or spend an overzealous amount, it would not bode well for well-off voters and elites. And with the article mentioning the notorious Englewood as a target of gentrification, can these actions be in any way helpful despite the greedy undertones?
- According to the Commercial Club, “It is essential to keep in mind that this failure [of CPS schools] is not attributable to the current CEO of the system or its board” (p. 21). Instead, the report argues, the problem is that public education is a “monopoly.” (481)
- In addition to privatization, Ren2010 reduces opportunities for democratic governance. Despite CPS leaders’ statements that they are neutral about how the new schools will be governed (CPS, 2004c), Ren2010 limits community participation in school governance by eliminating LSCs in two-thirds of the schools. (484)
- “We suggest that Ren2010 can be understood as part of a larger process that Neil Smith (2002) calls “the class conquest of the city”—reconstituting the city for the middle and upper-middle classes as a space of upscale housing, Lipman, Haines / Chicago Public Schools 485 shopping, restaurants, cultural venues and streetscapes” (485-486).
- “Frustration with the failure to consult with communities and school workers and to invite their authentic participation is a central theme in the rallies, community forums, press conferences, school board testimony, and information disseminated to the public by those opposed to Ren2010” (486).
A look into a major historical event will be another main point to be brought up. By having specific information on the matter and where it went wrong, I can make a better solution as to how to implement reforms.
Stovall, David “Against the Politics of Desperation: Educational Justice, Critical Race Theory, and Chicago School Reform.” Critical Studies in Education 54.1 (2013): 33–43. Web.
Stovall in this piece writes of a more historical lens, referencing back to the Renaissance 2010 and past educational reforms as factors in the current issue plaguing the city. A political emphasis is placed upon the mayor’s effect on the community. As his reforms began foreclosing a number of schools, so too does the author touch upon local responses, such as initiatives done by parents. Yet goes into the subject of gentrification as well as the desire to stay, an interesting set that adds to the complexity of the subject matter. Despite how bad conditions get for poorer families within the city, the author notes how some families embraced the change in politics.
The study adds quite a lot of analysis as to why educational conditions are the way they are. It lists out specific initiatives and legislation and then gives the effects they had. The only matter that it lacks is the very thorough procedures. For an outsider looking in, they’re is quite a list of information that will not appeal to a reader. Not to mention, the case studies do not have a focus group and draw on others data. It is pure history alongside some detailed analysis of events. For this study to be better understood, there would need to be some prior research put into the topic.
- “On the surface, the new CPS options are positioned as a move toward social (racial), economic, and educational justice with the retooling of schools for African-American and Latino/a students. In reality, many of these consolation prizes are offered to communities without their consultation.”
- “As a byproduct of Renaissance 2010, schools that once were neighborhood public schools have become magnet schools, language academies, math and science academies, military academies, or visual and performing arts centers.”
- Because many families have experienced or are fearful of exposing their child to the worst that CPS has to offer, some families embrace a politics of desperation.”
- “With the aforementioned in mind, I would like readers to consider the following counterstory: of the 95% African-American residents in Chicago public housing before the Plan for Transformation was implemented, 40% were senior citizens living on a fixed income.”
This source is mostly on the educational system in general, giving context into why the system shows strengths and weaknesses as it does. To be able to describe the current educational events in the city, it could do well toward informing the reader of why education is stressed in my research.
Strayhorn, Terrell L. “Different Folks, Different Hopes.” Urban Education, vol. 44, no. 6, pp. 710-731, 2009
A much broader study of Blacks across the country rather than simply just within the dichotomy of city and suburbs on the gap in college enrollment. The author seeks to contextualize the reasons why African Americans perform the way they do in their specific locations, such as delving into terms like stereotype threat. The author also draws on Bronfenbrenner’s ecological system of theories as a means of listing out factors that go into why one performs the way they do, ranging from three systems and within each multiple factor. His views presented in his literature review on educational aspirations in cities do well to enlist numerous sources worth looking into.
The problem with this source lies in its broadness. While it gives me the chance to use generalizations, there are factors that the study can give me. For instance, it has no specifics on Chicago itself or the factors that affect different portions of the country. Considering how I in particular focus on a single city that struggles with a long list of factors, it is not very useful for an individual case. And unlike other studies touched upon, the idea of limitations that the study has is not clearly brought up. However, the author’s purpose in writing this was for the national overview of the issue at hand and to look into a single aspect.
- “Third, although prior studies have shown that boys benefit significantly from living in suburban neighborhoods (Ensminger, Lamkin, & Jacobson, 1996), no studies measure the sensitivity of African American males’ educational aspirations to neighborhood effects across urban, suburban, and rural contexts” (717).
- “Results from this study provide empirical support that Black males from high-SES families tend to have higher educational aspirations than their lower- and low-SES counterparts” (722).
- “Thus, these findings may provide evidence to support Bourdieu’s (1977) notion of cultural capital—high-SES students may acquire from their educated parents the capital necessary to succeed in high school and to make plans for higher education” (722).
The utility of this study is much covered in the critique, saying that this is a general means of proving the overall differences between suburban and urban students. This will provide specific data on urban African Americans as a whole and allow the transition to Chicago in particular.
Walsh, Margaret. “Teaching Sociology.” Teaching Sociology, vol. 25, no. 1, 1997, pp. 100–101. JSTOR, JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/1319129.
Despite only being a review, the analysis given by Walsh gives valuable insight into one of the most notable attempts made to bridge the poor city and wealthy suburb. She does well to summarize the entire basis of the documentary and highlights key points where the director Steven James took. As someone who has watched the movie already, I am overjoyed to see someone list out the major points. The author does more than just praise the film, rather she asserts that it does not reinforce stereotypes but rather a simple perception of two families as she puts it.
With how short of a source it is, there is bound to be numerous room for critique. She certainly manages to summarize the events, however, her personal analysis at the end is more lacking. If she had used the books she referenced at greater length, the reader would better understand the extent to which the film reached her. I think that she should have answered how the documentary may not have reflected real-life situations or how it perfectly portrayed them. One of the controversial points of the movie is that the cast taped a family without power and did nothing to help. It begs the question of how does the filming process affect the behaviors the families had?
- “Waving as her son leaves for college, Mrs. Gates remarks, “I just hope he stays in there. That’s what worries me most” (101).
- When William and Arthur reflect on the past few years, each wishes he could get back his “carefree attitude” about basketball. They have a lot on their minds and feel great amounts of pressure” (100).
- “According to statistics provided by the NCAA, only 1 high school senior basketball player in 2,300 will make an NBA roster” (101).
The utility of this is an example of a specific case. It cannot possibly be used for the main contention but it reinforces the idea of attitudes urban Black kids have in a new environment.