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The [Tuesday] Papers

"A week after Curie High School won the city basketball championship, a Chicago Public Schools investigation revealed that seven Curie basketball players had been ineligible for the entire season because the correct paperwork hadn't been filed," the Sun-Times reports.

"The Sun-Times' No. 1-ranked team was stripped of its city title and 24 victories for the season.

"Now, a Sun-Times investigation has found that CPS officials can't say for sure that basketball players at every school - including the top teams - were eligible."

Also, a renewed effort by the Sun-Times to mention the Sun-Times in every paragraph.

It also might be of more interest to readers that Curie was ranked second nationally than first locally.


But on to the real story:

"[T]he school district is missing most of the paperwork required to show team and player eligibility, documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request show. The district ignored initial requests for the data and later released it."

So virtually the whole district was ineligible.


"The lack of accountability regarding the academic eligibility of student-athletes raises serious questions about the academic success of the students, the lessons the students are learning from school leaders and what it means for the future of the players, education experts said."

I wish I wasn't so distracted by the construction of this article. I really dislike when something passively raises questions - and then reporters and/or their editors find it necessary to attribute that something to "experts" they have sought out to validate that something passively raises questions. Just say it! Or don't - we get it. The fact that CPS apparently doesn't keep academic eligibility records for its athletes stands on its own. It doesn't need to raise any questions outside of the obvious: Why? Who is responsible for this? What are the ramifications?


"Though the CPS sports administration department is required by CPS bylaws to have official computer-generated eligibility sheets on file for each team for every game, the district only could provide 46 of those sheets on file - despite the 460 scheduled conference games this school year that should have produced 920 certificates.

"But there is at least one instance where each team in the game followed the rules and submitted the correct paperwork, according to CPS records. That game was played by Roosevelt and North-Grand high schools."

The word "but" should be used to show a counter-point, not a point that reinforces the previous assertion, as is the case here. So it would be more appropriate to write that "In fact, there was only one game all year when the correct paperwork was filed."


"Apparently, no forms were on file for any of the 31 games in the city championship tournament, which Curie was forced to forfeit."

So the whole tournament should have been forfeited.


"CPS officials only could provide the Central Office Records Sheet, a form submitted at the start of the season listing eligible players, for 30 of the 96 CPS boys basketball teams.

"Some of the documents, which were redacted by CPS, appeared to be unsigned. None of the forms appear to be from teams in the top conferences, the Red South and Red West. At least two teams from the Red Central, DuSable and King high schools, submitted the forms."

So who is in charge of the CPS sports administration department? Isn't that the person responsible for this? We aren't told. Instead, we get prepared statements from Barbara Byrd-Bennett and spokesman Joel Hood. In other words, CPS officials refused to answer questions but the Sun-Times let them pretend they did.


It's pretty clear from the reporting that eligibility requirements have pretty much never been enforced - except when absolutely necessary.


"Why are we the only team being penalized?" Curie coach Mike Oliver said. "Why out of all these years were we the only ones getting penalized for not turning in sheets?"

1. Good question.

2. Lesson: You don't get a free pass to disregard the rules just because everyone else is disregarding the rules. You never know when you're the one who will get caught. Just do the right thing - and if that puts you at a competitive disadvantage, so be it. Become an advocate for a level playing field, as it were. Raise the standards for everyone else instead of lowering them for yourself.


Death Of Soul Music Collector, Preservationist "Devastating To Chicago Cultural History."


* Vodafone Exposes Government Wiretapping.

Don't become numb and normalized to the drumbeat of these revelations; outrage should increase daily. Then again, most of these revelations aren't on your local newspapers' websites, so maybe less chance of numbness or outrage accruing that I imagine.

* 17 Student Groups Pen Open Letters On The Toxicity Of Mass Surveillance To Academic Freedom.

Not numb yet.

* Documents Show How Clinton Leaked Names Of Court Nominees.

Playing the media for the suckers they are.

* The Dangers Of A World Without Net Neutrality.

Do you really want Comcast to decide?

* Northwestern Nearly Tripling The Size Of Ryan Field Video Board.

Also changing name to Ricketts Field.

* About 900 Illinois Veterans Requested, Didn't Get Care.

We take care of our own.

* Wheeling Woman Breaks Into Stranger's Home, Demands Beer.

Hey, the door wasn't locked. Plus, beer.







Hint: Ron Wyden only presses questions for answers he already has but is prohibited from publicly revealing himself.







The Beachwood Tip Line: Tip spelled backwards is pit.


Posted on June 10, 2014

MUSIC - Madonna vs. Moderna.
TV - Sundays With The Military-Industrial Complex.
POLITICS - Private Equity In The ER.
SPORTS - Suspicious Betting Trends In Soccer.

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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