This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.
Those of us interested in exploring what is right and wrong, fair and unfair about Philadelphia’s high school admissions process should read this story co-written by Stephanie Banchero, my good friend and colleague on the Education Writers Association board. It was published today in the Chicago Tribune and describes an appeals process for the well-connected created by Arne Duncan when he was superintendent there. In Philadelphia, we all know there is something called "directed admissions," in which some spaces are reserved for students who have influential advocates, but it is secretive and shadowy. Chicago kept a log of all the calls.