The Chicago Sun-Times is following the third graders at a new University of Chicago charter school that’s trying to educate low-income black kids from the projects with middle-class black students. Even in third grade, the range of skills is wide: Some kids are at kindergarten level, including the daughter of a woman studying to become a teacher, while others are working at grade level, including the daughter of a recovering drug addict living on a disability check.
Behavior is a problem, but it’s not always the project kids who are disrupting class.
Update: U of C recommends “guided reading” to enable students at different reading levels to learn in the same class. In mid-year, a literacy specialist was brought in to give more help to the lowest group of readers.