School reform Chicago style: How citizens organized to change public policy

August 24, 2011

Mary O'Connell leads readers through the 1980s' movement to decentralize the Chicago Public Schools -- one of the city's largest, most successful community organizing campaigns. In addition to creating local school councils, the campaign planted the seeds for a number of today's reforms, including filling teacher vacancies without regard to seniority and giving schools more autonomy. At the time, O'Connell was editor of "The Neighborhood Works," a newsmagazine published by the Center for Neighborhood Technology, which gave Catalyst permission to republish her 47-page book. Published in spring 1991 by the Center for Neighborhood TechnologySponsored by the Woods Fund of Chicago