Chicago’s Noble Network: Teachers Call “No-Excuses” Discipline “Dehumanizing”

It is my belief that high teacher turnover rate is always a smoke signal, so to speak. In this case, it sounds as if cultural competency training is in order. Culturally insensitive teachers can potentially inflict long term damage on students’ educational goals.

Diane Ravitch's blog

Teachers who worked at Chicago’s leading charter chain spoke out to NPR and described their discomfort with the strict disciplinary code. Some called it “dehumanizing.” 

“The trend toward school choice has educators across the country looking at Chicago’s Noble Charter Schools — an award-winning network of mostly high schools that specializes in helping inner-city kids achieve the kind of SAT scores that propel them into four-year universities. But despite its prestigious reputation, Noble has a peculiarly high teacher turnover rate.

“And some of those teachers are speaking up about policies they describe as “dehumanizing.”

“Noble’s handbook lists more than 20 behaviors that can elicit demerits. The dress code, for example, requires students to wear light khakis, plain black leather belts,

“Kerease Epps, who taught at Noble’s Hansberry College Prep, made sure to arrive by seven o’clock every day to help students with curved lines in their hair avoid punishment.


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