Since launching Chicago Public School Tiers in 2012, we've received many emails from parents who find Chicago Public School's Tier policy frustrating and unfair. Below are a few of them.

If you would like to share your opinion of the CPS Tier policy with us, send an email to cpstiers@opencityapps.org and we'll post it here.

Feb 26, 2013

I am writing to let you know that for many people the Tier system does not work. When filling out my son's application for 2013, if by mistake or if something changed we appeared to be a Tier 3. My son scored a perfect on his entrance exam and straight A's.

He applied to Northside Prep and did not get in. I called OAE to double check since looking at the cut off scores posted on OAE he clearly scored 886, which means he should have gotten in. I was informed that we are in a Tier 4. I understand that the Tier system was in theory designed to be fair, but is not working. I looked into what determines a Tier scoring, I understand home owning, educational background, english as first language, etc. I live in the Ukraninan Village, all of my neighbors are elderly immigrants that have very little education, do not speak English. Personally, in our situation, both parents do not have a college education and we currently make less than 50,000.00 per year. We are struggling to get by daily. My son has worked extremely hard to get into Northside only to be crushed because you think we live in a rich neighborhood.

These are schools for the academically gifted, maybe we should work it like they do in New York - strictly scores. I could pull out all of our tax returns to prove we are clearly not a Tier 4 family. A kid in Tier 2 or 3 will get in with much lower test scores or academic ability than my son which could actually do the work and excel in this type of environment. I believe this rating to be a mistake and unfortunatley my son is the one to suffer for it and it will greatly affect his future. What is one extremely gifted kid lost though, right? We can not be the only family that falls thru the cracks on this scoring, I believe it to affect many. It is quite unfortunate, these children are put through so much pressure under a false Tiering system.

Jan 27, 2013

This system is crooked and faulty. The kids in our school are all on free or reduced lunch. This is horrible and a huge injustice to the kids of our community. The stats are wrong, there's not one parent that I know that went to college, not one… What does that tell you? You can't compare the education from school to school either. How can you compare the education at Decatur with the education at a regular school and then have them fight for spots at a selective school? How fair is it when we both live in the same area and you go to Decatur while I go to the local school, you live in Tier 3 while I live across the street and I'm in Tier 4. Who has the advantage here? It makes no sense whatsoever….. Considering the kind of people that run CPS, it's no wonder it's going no where fast. We need to fight for real equality. This is just insane and un-ethical …

Nov 11, 2012

This is the biggest injustice I've seen in years . Throwing schools where 80% of children receive free or reduced lunch in Tier 4 is the biggest injustice done to these kids.

Where do they come up with this crap. If you visit our area it does not look like any Tier 4 neighborhood. Its crazy and preposterous to think these kids could compete with the kids on Lakeshore drive who have private tutors and the means to go to a private school. Shame to all of you involved.