Skinner West Classical

Viewing 9 reply threads
  • Author
    • #10155 Reply

      Why is the Skinner West killing its classical program , it seems there is no curriculum there.

    • #10156 Reply

      SW use to have two classical classes but they eliminated one of the classical classes for neighborhood. The neighborhood is packed and they want to send their children to a good public school. A lot of the children who live in that area couldn’t qualify for those very competitive seats and you had a lot of children from outside the neighborhood taking those seats ( Taylor Beginnings).

    • #10157 Reply

      I heard they have overcrowding issues so SW goes to the bottom of my list.

      • #10170 Reply

        You’re better off at South Loop, to be honest.

    • #10158 Reply

      How is Skinner West killing it’s classical program?

      • #10159 Reply

        reduced the number of seats for more neighborhood children to attend.

    • #10163 Reply

      When will this go into effect?

      • #10164 Reply

        there used to be two classical classrooms but this was reduced to one classical class about 5-7 yrs ago.

        • #10165 Reply

          I believe OP was talking about recent rumor that Skinner West plans to kill Classical program completely.

    • #10182 Reply

      SW is still an option for 2020-2021 SY for kindergarten

    • #10275 Reply

      Skinner is very overcrowded.  We have a kid in classical and there are 30 in the class with no aide, upper classical grades have even more, and the neighborhood classrooms are larger.  The school is very chaotic.  I hope they do something about the overcrowding.  Are there really plans to possibly move the program out of there?  It’d make sense, but I would hope they would find a new place for it nearby.

    • #10437 Reply


      You said “A lot of the children who live in that area couldn’t qualify for those very competitive seats and you had a lot of children from outside the neighborhood taking those seats”

      You should note that everyone who lives in the West Loop lives in tier 4, there are only 10 spots a year for tier 4 in each new Kindergarten class for the classical program.  (They only have 1 classical class for each grade now.)  There are typically 3 or 4 neighborhood classrooms per grade with 33+ students in each classroom.  So I don’t think your statement is very accurate as there are only 10 spots!   Many of the neighborhood classrooms are performing at the same or higher level than the classical classes since the classical classrooms draw from all four tiers.

    • #10438 Reply

      Not 10, but more like 14 (almost half the class) at least could be tier 4. 30% rank =9 students + 25% of remaining 21 seats = 5 students. Also after about round 3, tiers do not matter. So, it is possible around 20-22 kids end up being tier 4.


      Also, you can’ t say that regular classrooms perform at the same or higher level becuase all are tier 4. SW sees picks the BEST from all 4 tiers, so someone from tier 1 at SEES will stilm be performing higher than a regular avergae tier 4 student.


    • #10445 Reply
      CPS parent

      Yes SEES picks the best from all 4 tiers. However, have a look at the score distribution as posted by CPS.  They used to post elementary scores on  For high school scores, you can find them now at  for high school.

      For high school, you will see a 100+ point difference in the scores of students accepted from Tier 1 and Tier 4. So while a Tier 4 student needs and 871/900 to go to Whitney Young, a Tier 1 student needs a 788/900.  So what about all those Tier 4 kids who scored between 788-870?  Their  scores are higher than Tier 1 but they didn’t get in to Whitney Young. Where do you think they are going? The answer is the neighborhood school-especially at a school like Skinner West which has an excellent reputation and draws in all those Tier 4s who scored in the mid-to high 90s but didn’t get in.  So those neighborhood classrooms at Skinner West are definitely filled with kids who score extremely high but not high enough.

      The neighborhood program at Skinner West definitely has an advantage in that there are 3 classrooms of neighborhood kids so they can rearrange them for math and reading instruction in their level. In the classical program, there is currently only 1 classroom of kids (in most grades) so there is no differentiation of math or reading and kids will be together with the same classmate from Kindergarten all the way through 8th grade.   And as of last year, there were some kids in Kindergarten and 1st grade classical who were not yet reading compared to those who had been reading for years.  The wide array of skill level in classical programs is kind of astounding. I’m saying all of this as a classical parent-who recognizes that a classical program is not always an advantage.  The one advantage I do see is that the classical program CONSISTENTLY teaches 1-2 grade levels above while the neighborhood program tends to flip back and forth between grades and years as to whether the teachers will decide to group the kids by level and differentiate instruction.


Viewing 9 reply threads
Reply To: Skinner West Classical
Your information: