Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations

Concept Schools, Gulen Charter Schools Midwest operations
DISCLAIMER:If you find some videos are disabled this is a result of Gulen Censorship and filing of fake copyright infringements to Utube.

Friday, December 27, 2013

STOP Gulen in USA politics and Education STOP CONCEPT SCHOOLS

Learn more how you can be a part of taking down the Gulen Stench in the USA.

Lets send the Gulen Movement packing back on the Orient Express to Istanbul to face charges of

trying to overthrow the secular government of Turkey.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Gulen Chicago corruption exposed by Chicago Sun Times, declined approval for schools at local level Gulenists go to state for favors

House Speaker and state Democratic Party chair Michael Madigan (left) shakes hands with Mustafa Demir, the mayor of Fatih district in Turkey.  Mustafa Demir was picked up on corruption charges in Turkey (one of 50 in the latest Gulen drama) on December 17, 2013
EXCELLENT article how the Concept Schools (Midwest operation of the Gulen Movement) was rejected by the CPS (Chicago Public Schools) for 2 new charter schools in the Chicago area under the Horizon Science name. The Gulen political bribing machine, then went to State Democratic leader and house speaker Madigan who had previously been a guest of Hizmet on the famous FREE trips to Turkey. MADIGAN overturned this REJECTION at the state level--and the Gulen Movement got the approval for 2 new schools in the Chicago area. One of these schools in going to be at a former factory site and there is serious concern over a toxic waste report. Madigan is an ASS.
When you read how Madigan and his staff got 4 trips to Turkey, not to mention how his son and other family members benefit from the Gulen “Concept Schools”  we really get a grasp of just how corrupt Illinois politics really is. 
By writer researcher Dan Mihalopoulos:
Updated: December 23, 2013 5:15PM 
When Concept Schools Inc. wanted to open two charter schools in Chicago last year, it sought permission from Chicago Public Schools officials.
The answer was no.
CPS officials have allowed the rapid expansion of charters. But they turned down Concept. They said the charter operator, headquartered in Des Plaines, didn’t merit being allowed to expand based on test scores at its one city school, the Chicago Math and Science Academy in Rogers Park.
Concept Schools appealed to a higher authority: the little-known Illinois State Charter School Commission. The state agency was created in 2011 by lawmakers including House Speaker Michael Madigan, the South Side Democrat who’s a powerful advocate of Concept and the faith-based Gulen movement to which the schools are connected.
This time, the answer was yes.
As the first, and so far only, charter operator to benefit from the decisions of the 2-year-old state agency, Concept is getting 33 percent more funding per pupil for those two new schools than the city school system gives other charters.
Madigan, who’s also the Illinois Democratic Party chairman, visited Concept’s Chicago Math and Science Academy last year. In a video the school posted on YouTube, Madigan praised the school, founded and run by Turkish immigrants.
MADE $100,000 
Like most charter schools, Concept Schools’ Chicago Math and Science Academy relies on local taxpayers for more than 92 percent of its $6 million-a-year budget.
CMSA sold its building in Rogers Park two years ago to a related not-for-profit company called New Plan Learning, which went to Wall Street to borrow $33.1 million through a bond issue to buy the North Side campus, add a gym and expand three other Concept schools in Ohio.
CMSA is on the hook to pay about $40 million in rent to New Plan Learning over 30 years to pay its share of the debt. Their only other option, school officials said, was to default on loans they took out in 2009 to buy the school’s current building in Rogers Park.
The school’s current board president, Edip Pektas, was treasurer at the time and recused himself from the bond-deal votes. School records show New Plan Learning paid $100,000 to Pektas as a financial adviser.
Pektas’ role with New Plan Learning was identified in bond documents. But those statements — given to potential bond buyers — did not disclose his CMSA board position.
Researcher and writer Dan Mihalopoulos connects the dots of Concept School officals with the various Gulen Movement front groups in the USA
The three Concept schools in Chicago are among more than 150 U.S. schools tied to the worldwide Gulen movement, according to Joshua D. Hendrick, a sociology professor at Loyola University Maryland and author of a recent book on the movement.
“They’re absolutely related,” Hendrick said of the charter schools and the other Turkish groups in Chicago.
Among the ties:
◆ The board president for Concept’s Chicago Math and Science Academy, Edip Pektas, is secretary of the Turkic American Federation of Midwest, an umbrella group for the Niagara Foundation and the Turkish chamber. “The Turkish American community is a smaller community in the region, and whenever there’s an activity, my name comes up,” Pektas said to questions about ties between the school and other groups.
◆ CMSA’s former treasurer Hasan Ali Yurtsever was president of the Gulen-affiliated Rumi Forum in Washington, D.C. In a 2007 interview at Georgetown University, Yurtsever said Gulen was a close family friend.
◆ Another former CMSA board member, Murat Surucu, was on the board of a Gulen-inspired group in California before moving to Chicago.
◆ Yavuz Burak Canbolat was the Turkish chamber’s treasurer at the same time he was CMSA president, from 2009 to 2011.
◆ Concept vice president Salim Ucan was principal of the Science Academy of Chicago, now located in Mount Prospect. That private school was started by Niagara Educational Services, which created the Niagara Foundation.
Niagara Foundation officials say they broke with Niagara Educational Services in 2009. But records show the Niagara Foundation’s president and another current board member were on the Niagara Educational Services board while it was owed loan payments by Concept’s real estate arm and while it leased a building to a Concept school in Ohio.
Despite the connections with Gulenists, Ucan said, “Concept Schools is not affiliated with, nor does it promote, any political or religious agendas.”

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

New Gulen Charter School in Chicago Horizon Science Academy building on a Toxic Waste Dump

Concept Schools NFP", is a charter school operator that is trying to have zoning at 2245 W. Pershing changed so a former industrial building, now a a abandoned vacant warehouse, can become the "Horizon Science Charter School Academy" for the start of the new 2013 -2014 school year. The zoning change will allow a charter school with an enrollment of 750 children: 18 classrooms, 4 science/computer laboratory rooms, a library, a cafeteria (with kitchen).


Monday, August 12, 2013

Concept Schools Gulen Management loses Minnesota School of Science BY ORDER OF JUDGE

We previously wrote about this new Gulen Operated School in Minnesota when it was announced they would open in 2010.  With barely 2 school years under the belt, the Gulenists in their usual scandalous habits asked the parents of 42 Special Needs students to take their children elsewhere.  Read the announcement and articles here:



Judge Rules to Close Mpls. Charter School

After months of debate a judge ruled a Minneapolis charter school will not stay open.

The Minneapolis school district evicted the Minnesota School of Science in June because it was behind in rent.

Parents have been rallying for months to keep the school open.

The Minnesota School of Science released a statement Wednesday afternoon saying, "Like the families and students we serve, we are absolutely devastated."

News here at: Channel 5 Eyewitness News in Minnesota

7 days before verdict, futile attempt by principal of Minnesota School of Science to give parents false hope

July 24, 2013

Dear Parents,

With school scheduled to resume in only a month, we continue to prepare for what we believe will be another outstanding school year. We recognize that this summer has been a challenging one in light of the current legal dispute that you may have read about regarding our school building. We have every intention of welcoming your students back to Cityview on August 22, and we thank you for your continued support.

In an effort to keep you informed, we wanted to take the opportunity to share with you the latest developments. On Tuesday July 30, our case will go before the Hennepin County District Court. The court is hearing our request that it stop Minneapolis Public Schools from interfering with our ability to open our doors to your children on August 26. It is impossible to know the outcome of the hearing, but with more than 300 Minneapolis students’ future at risk, we are hopeful that the court will grant our request.

As you know, we have worked hard to create a community through our school, and our commitment to you will not change. We stand with you, and we invite you to join us at 6 p.m. Monday July 29 at the school to rally for what we know to be an excellent school in a remarkable community. The event will be brief, but we believe it is important to come together as a community to support our students’ right to excellent education they deserve.

As always, please reach out with any questions or concerns. You can reach me at or 612-8863225. We will continue to keep you informed as this issue progresses, and rest assured we are doing everything we can to fight together for our school and the North Minneapolis community. You can expect additional communication from us following the July 30 hearing, and we will also be posting information on our website Our school’s strength and success come from the commitment and support of our parents, and our community. Thank you for everything you do for us and your student.


Mr. Icel

3350 North 4th Street Minneapolis, MN 55412

Letter to parents from Minnesota School of Science before VERDICT handed down by judge to CLOSE SCHOOL.


MINNEAPOLIS - Backers of the soon-to-be closed Minnesota School of Science (MSS) are not ready to give up their fight to save the program yet.

A lawsuit was filed by the school this week to stop the Minneapolis Public Schools efforts to effectively close what administrators call "a cornerstone that provides high-quality education to one of the city's most underserved communities."

The school is requesting that a state court issue a temporary restraining order against MPS and its ongoing efforts to discredit the school, remove MSS property, illegally recruit students, interfere with MSS teacher contracts and put an end to the school's tremendous success.

"We will not be moved," said Dr. Rosilyn Carroll, a founding member of the MSS board. "Our students and our teachers have a legal right to be here, and we refuse to let anyone interfere with the tremendous achievement that has been taking place in our classrooms."

Since the district made the decision to phase out the school, angry parents and staff members have demonstrated and voiced their support for MSS.

Officials at MSS say in just two years the school has seen remarkable academic and personal growth among its students, who now consistently outperform the district average.

"In only two years, the Minnesota School of Science has made tremendous progress, giving north Minneapolis families access to the quality education they deserve," Carroll said. "We intend to open our doors for the first day of school August 26, and we look forward to seeing our students and teachers back here."

(Copyright 2013 by KARE. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. )

Not even protests to the school board made a difference

Parents Protest Closure of N. Mpls Charter School

Parents, students and community members are pleading with the Minneapolis Public School Board to keep a North Minneapolis charter school open.

Parents will begin protesting at 11 a.m. Monday at the school, and an open house will be held at Cityview Community School at 9 a.m. for a new program to replace it.

About 100 people showed up at the school board meeting last Tuesday asking the board to let the Minnesota School of Science stay in its current home in the Cityview Community School building on 4th St. N. The charter school has been operating for two years, but school officials say students have already made great strides in raising test scores and achieving academic success. Parents say their kids are excited to go to school, eager to do their homework and participate in extra curricular activities ranging from math team to robotics competitions.

Late last month, the school board revoked the lease for MSS, meaning the school would have to move out of its current home by the end of July. The school maintains it has had some financial issues during its first few months but has worked to correct them. School officials say all they want is a fair shot to stay in the current building, serve the needs of the North Minneapolis community and give students a chance at achieving success in school and in life.

The district says it is working with students, parents and teachers to provide the best educational opportunities possible for the MSS community.

Full statement from the Minneapolis Public School District:

Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) appreciates that parents from the Minnesota School of Science (MSS) took the time [Tuesday] to speak to Dr. Bernadeia Johnson, superintendent of schools, and the Board of Education. We understand that school changes are very challenging for students, parents and staff members, which is why we are doing all that we can to have a high quality educational program in place for MSS students.

Our job tonight was to listen to parents and staff members. Our job as a school system is to ensure that students have the best opportunity possible for the coming school year. We are working to accomplish both.

We understand that many parents are likely receiving conflicting information about the lease and program at MSS. The decision not to move forward with a change of authorizer for MSS is due to the school being in Intervention. It simply would not be responsible for the MPS central office to support a change of authorizer at this time when there are unresolved issues in financial mismanagement, testing irregularities for the past two years and practices of counseling students with high behavioral needs out of the school. This in combination of MSS being unable to make lease payments to MPS last school year resulted in MSS no longer being able to operate in the Cityview building or any other MPS facility.

Parents work hard to find the right school for their children’s educational needs. That is why so many kinds of schools exist: public district, charter, neighborhood, magnet, private, home school.

We are confident that MPS staff will have a quality program in place at Cityview in the fall of 2013. An open house is scheduled for Monday, June 17th, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. If families have questions, Tyler Salkey, the family liaison for the new Cityview program, is available to assist them. Those who desire to have their student continue attending the MSS program, will also be assisted in the transition to the school’s new site, which is yet to be determined.

Here is what we promise: we will work with parents, teachers and staff at MSS to provide the best possible option for the students in the Cityview building. Again, we thank you those who came to the meeting tonight for sharing their perspectives—there is no greater stakeholder in your student’s education than you and them.


Sunday, July 7, 2013

Horizon Science Academy expansion into Chicago? Not without a fight from Americans meeting 7/13

This School was denied and then in the true Gulen predictable fashion, they bought some favors, honors, campaign contributions and free trips to Turkey for some state and local officals and PRESTO----They (the Gulenists) get approval for a school overturning the earlier denial.
check out Gulen Politicians on Alderman Cardenas

Gulenist then locate a school site where a former factory was, that is riddled with toxic waste and hazardous to children.  But then education isn't their focus nor is the safety of American children.....

The schools, children and outer appearances are for one thing----to increase share of power for the Gulen Movement.  The Gulenists are hardly scholars or come from a good education system, they have no business teaching American Children.

July 13th Meeting.  THEY MUST BE STOPPED.

Horizon Science Academy dba Concept Schools Racism letter of apology to black students not enough

What is wrong with this hairstyle?  She is too adorable
Apparently the racist Turks that operate Concept Schools dba Horizon Science Academy thought it was inappropriate

Last week, we told you about Horizon Science Academy, a school in Ohio that – as part of its dress code - banned afro puffs and braids.
After widespread outrage, Horizon has lifted the ban and released an apology.
Along with lifting the ban, the school vows to take necessary steps to “prevent this from ever happening again.”
Check out the letter below:

This same shameful article about Horizon Science Academy's racial biased dress code also appeared in the Huffington Education Blog.  This same network of Gulen charter schools wants to open in Chicago where a large part of the population are African Americans, do the Gulenists (who are not American) understand African culture and sensitivity enough to be teaching in American Classrooms?

The African children attending their Turkish Schools in Africa are learning Turkish and can be heard walking down the streets of Nigeria conversing in Turkish rather than in Nigerian.


Thursday, June 27, 2013

Gulen Charter schools compared-The AFT, Education, Common Core, Privatization and GreenDot/Concept Gule...

Gulen section starts at 17:00

During the June 2013 conference of Netroots in San Jose, the AFT set up a booth on privatization, high stakes testing and reform in the schools. The AFT is supporting the Common Core but says that it is not being rolled out properly. The issue of re-segregationa of the schools is also discussed along with the the privatization of education through testing by Pearson Inc., K-12 corporation and other companies. The union is seeking to make a "cleavage" of the school reform movement. The issue of organizing in the charter schools is also discussed and what challenges the union faces including union busting by
the largest national charter chain run by Concept Schools which is connected with the Fethullah Gulen movement in Turkey. Gulen is connected to the police including repression of journalists and runs some of the largest newspaper in Turkey along with supporting privatization and theocratic policies in Turkey's schools.
The AFT also differentiated the for profit GreenDot chain of schools with the Gulen schools arguing that they were very different particularly because they allowed unionization of the schools and allowed the teachers to have discussion with the management about curriculum. An AFT representative agreed to provide an audio interview on issues in education.
For more video go to:
For more information
Production of Labor Video Project

Friday, June 14, 2013

Gulen Concept school in Milwaulke Turk Teacher caught napping- America wins school now CLOSED!!!!

Turk teacher was caught on camera/phone napping during class.  This Concept school operated by Gulenists in Milwaulke is now CLOSED.  America is winning, the Gulenists are getting denied and it is average Americans that are fighting them and winning in: Loudoun County (VA) Lancaster County (PA)  Knoxville (TN)  Mokapu (HI) and many more that are denied.
There is only one way to go from here for the Gulenists and that is downward.

A south-side Milwaukee voucher high school that was on the rocks this year has now shuttered its doors, and a student cellphone photo paints an uninspiring view of what appears to have transpired in at least one class this year:

That's Nehnet Camalan, the former business manager for the now defunct voucher school Wisconsin College Prep Academy. Camalan was substitute teaching a math class; the photo was passed along to the Journal Sentinel by a former staff member.
Wisconsin College Prep announced in a letter on June 11 that it was closing its doors due to low enrollment and ongoing budgetary concerns.
Ali Yilmaz, the former executive director for the school, said in an interview Thursday that Camalan was terminated on May 30, but not because he was sleeping instead of teaching. He was let go because the school couldn't afford to pay his salary and benefits.
"According to him, he put his head down for one second and the student took a picture," Yilmaz explained.
It's been a tough road for the charter-turned-voucher school, which was located at 4801 S. 2nd St. near Mitchell International Airport.
Wisconsin College Prep was formerly known as the Wisconsin Career Academy. It was a sixth- through 12th-grade charter school under Milwaukee Public Schools, before the Milwaukee School Board terminated that contract.
The school then decided to apply to become a private high school and accept public funding through the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program. That was a financially questionable move considering that high school students are more expensive to educate than younger pupils, and that voucher payments amount to fewer public dollars per-pupil than charter school funding.
The school had about 165 students enrolled this year, Yilmaz said. He said about 32 seniors graduated and have been accepted to four-year colleges. He said there were "probably one or two" who did not have sufficient credits to graduate.
Yilmaz said enrollment has been difficult because of the school's far south-side location.
Former teachers say it was because of academic and other internal concerns, such as the fact that the school dropped Spanish this year and offered only Turkish as a foreign language. Yilmaz explained that the Spanish teacher quit and that the school couldn't find another teacher. He said Spanish was offered online instead.
The school had launched an aggressive marketing campaign last summer to try to attract students, and even offered to pay for transportation for pupils to get to the school.
But the numbers did not materialize.
In a confidential internal letter forwarded to the Journal Sentinel by a former staff member, Yilmaz told employees in May that the school could not sign contracts for the next year until enrollment numbers reached a certain number.
The letter advised that the matter was confidential, and that sharing information or "your assumptions about the school's future" with students, parents or other interested parties could result in immediate dismissal from work.
Yilmaz said Thursday that although the school was now closed, teachers would continue to be paid through the end of their contracts, which end in August.
Last year, the Journal Sentinel had questioned whether the school was linked to a reclusive Islamic cleric or otherwise had ties to Turkish schools nationwide that were highlighted in a 60 Minutes investigation.
Yilmaz denied the school was linked to that cleric, but he said Thursday that some of the school's materials were headed to Concept Schools, which are also headed by Turkish Americans and have faced similar scrutiny.
Concept Schools also rebuffs claims that they are "Turkish schools" or "Gulen Charter Schools."
Comments (49) View Comments »

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Concept Schools tries to open school in Chicago despite community opposition (Gulen Charter School Chicago) Horizon Science Academy

'Keep Out of McKinley Park!' Residents Voice Opposition to New Concept Charter School

Despite dozens of outsiders bused into the McKinley Park community to support a charter school that the Alderman had tried to foist on the community through the back door, residents of the McKinley Park community and the 12th Ward were clear in their opposition to charter school expansion during a heated meeting on May 7, 2013. The 12th Ward meeting was forced on the alderman by social media and Substance News investigations into the backdoor deal being worked out during a year when Chicago is not supposed to be expanding charter schools. Alderman George Cardenas, 12th Ward, has been maneuvering to open a "Concept Charter School" in the McKinley Park neighborhood on the Southwest Side of Chicago for several weeks. On May 7, residents voiced their opposition to the plans for the charter school in the face of busloads of outsiders brought in to support the alderman.

Part of the crowd at McKinley Park for the meeting on the proposal to put the Concept Charter School into the community. Actual community residents opposed the charter school, so the alderman and charter people tried to bus in outsiders. Substance photo by John Kugler.The school, which has been supported by Alderman George Cardenas of the 12th Ward, was supposed to be located across from McKinley Park at 2245 W. Pershing Rd in a vacant factory building. Substance has already reported that the proposed site, which would have to be re-zoned for the school to go there, has toxicity problems. Residents of another part of town have already rejected the proposed expansion of "Concept Charter Schools" in Chicago. The charter school operator currently operates the so-called "Chicago Math Science Academy" charter school in the 49th Ward on the other side of town.

In the packed gymnasium of the McKinley Park field house, residents and charter school supporters numbered at least 120. The crowd was subjected to listen to speakers for almost an hour explaining and trying to justify the need for a new charter school in the area.

There were about 30 residents from McKinley Park proper supported by various staff from neighborhood schools.

Then there were the bused in people numbering 90 from another Concept Charter School, the so-called "Chicago Math and Science Academy" which is located on the North Side of Chicago — a full 17.7 miles away from the proposed site of the new charter school. There were groups of charter staff standing behind McKinley Park residents as a show of force wearing matching t-shirts. There was even a former Alderman, Mark Fary, of the 12th ward in attendance to support Alderman George Cardenas. Cardenas is promoting the new charter school, supposedly to "relieve overcrowding" in the area. The residents of Cardenas's ward want real public schools, not more charters.

12th Ward alderman George Cardenas has long supported union-busting, going back nearly a decade when he appeared in support of Wal-Mart with a number of since indicated political leaders during the term of Mayor Richard M. Daley. Above, Cardenas tried to drum up support for the Concept Charter School being located into the McKinley Park community at the May 7, 2013 meeting. Substance photo by John Kugler.Alderman Cardenas who is whole-heartedly supporting this charter, started the evening by giving a rendition of his life story and struggles as a young Latino in Chicago. Despite widespread universal opposition to the plan, Cardenas declared that he knew what was best for the area and that this school was needed because of overcrowding in the neighborhood schools.

Boos and statics were called out to refute the Alderman’s claims. CPS statistics show the complete opposite of what Cardenas is telling the residents. All neighborhood schools in the McKinley Park area are running "efficiently" and could add capacity if needed.

Cardenas was unabashed in his conflicting versions of reality. On the one hand, Cardenas made sure to clearly state that he supports Rahm Emanuel’s policies and would go forward with his policies because he knew what was best for the community. In a slip of the tongue Cardenas said that Pershing/Western is one of most dangerous intersections in city. This is the exact location of where this charter school is going to be located.

"Then why put the school there?" was the reaction from the crowd.

Concept Charter Schools filled buses for the May 7 meeting at their "Chicago Math Science Academy," located in the 49th Ward more than seven miles from McKinley Park. During the McKinley Park meeting, they at first tried to pose as "community" residents, but were exposed by the actual residents. The alderman then passed the podium to Concept Schools spokesperson Salim Ucan who started by stating, "There are misconceptions about this process.” He then went on to try and explain to the crowd that all the proper procedures were followed. There were not too many specifics of the particular project that were explained. It was more about how this new school would provide what he called "choice" in this neighborhood.

To which teachers and residents in the audience yelled out that the schools were good in the area and this would take away much needed resources from the existing schools. One audience member made it clear that charter school movement had a direct negative affect on open enrollment public schools by taking away students from neighborhood schools.

“We do not need a new school, we need to keep the ones we have,” was shouted from the crowd. Another resident yelled out, “Outsiders do not have to tell us how to run our neighborhood.”

Mr. Ucan then passed the podium to Jeanne L. Nowaczewski, of the Illinois Charter School Commission. She went on to try to validate the "Concept" organization to the crowd. In one statement having nothing to do with the zoning issue at hand, she stated that the Concept charter school board of directors "has nothing to do with any movement, Gulen movement or any movement." To which the crowd gasped that a state official would openly take a position to argue against allegations of the alleged cult following from Turkey behind the Concept charter schools in the United States. Nowaczewski, like many other state and national charter school officials, got her start at the Chicago Board of Education, where for years she was in charge of what was known as the "Small Schools Office." After the "Small Schools" fad crashed and burned, her office was renamed the "Office of New Schools" and continued pushing charter schools for all of Chicago. Nowaczewski began her career with the powerful business group "Business and Professional People for the Public Interest."

When explaining the process by which the charter organization bypassed the rejection by the Chicago Public Schools of the schools application to open new schools, there was no clear explanation of the fact the the local school district would loose control of a school within the city limits. In fact Mrs. Nowaczewski made clear that in rejecting this charter that district 299 did not know what it was doing. She said, “CPS is wrong.”

Finally it was time for the audience to have their questions answered after sitting through a series of support speeches for the charter organization.

There was no detailed explanation of how a decision was made to locate a charter school at 2245 W. Pershing Rd. Audience members were told to write their questions in pieces of paper and they would be taken by Mr. Ucan to answer. This immediately started displeasure with the McKinley Park residents who stated this was their meeting and should be open for anyone to ask questions without writing then down. The first question read was about the fact that no environmental assessment was submitted to the zoning committee as part of the application to get this project approved through the committee.

Mr. Ucan started to talk about how his organization was committed to a safe school environment. Further he stated that in no terms would he as an educator himself send any child into a building that was unsafe. This reporter, John Kugler, held up an EPA Toxicology report and environmental assessment stating that the property was labeled as a toxic site.

There was yelling and an attempt to control the discussion, but residents did not allow Mr. Ucan to continue to state that the building was safe. When Mr. Ucan finally stated talking again another McKinley Park resident took to the front of the room stating that this was an undemocratic process. The speaker now was in front of the podium at which time police were deployed to take him away. The crowd booed and yelled their displeasure with this show of disrespect for democracy in a public forum. The gentleman was allowed to voice his concerns to which Alderman Cardenas stepped in and answered.

Then there was the topic of community of canvassing that Mr. Ucan was done door to door. To this there were shouts of "Liar!" and "Fraud!" from the audience. This is when I stood up and showed the audience the signature sheets purported to be from McKinley Park residents. The first sheet was signed by someone with an Indiana address. There was an uproar form the crowd. “Liar, fraud, you never been here!” were shouted at the podium.

At this point the Alderman and Mr. Ucan lost control of the room and discussion. Individuals started taking turns voicing their concerns and questions without waiting for the podium speakers to continue taking extra time to control the time of the meeting. Topics ranged from the lack of transparency to the union-busting record of this organization.

At this point Mr. Ucan tried to take control of the room with a narrative that all Concept Charter school employees were free to organize.

Teachers and administrators from Concept Charter Schools tried to look imposing in their charter school tee shirts during the meeting. Substance photo by John Kugler.

CTU Staff Coordinator Jackson Potter quickly took control of the room by stating that the truth must be told. That in fact Concept Charter Schools has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars fighting unionization in their charter school. This started an all-out refutation by many from the crowd against the charter school speakers and their union busting policies. To take back control of the room, the Charter speakers brought up students who were bused in from the North side to give testimonials about how their lives had changed by attending the charter school. The crowd quieted down in respect of the students’ right to speak even as they were used to control the room.

After the students spoke, some employees of the charter school started to speak about the union busting allegations again. This again riled up the crowd. After going back and fort for a bit while longer everyone agreed that there were strong positions on both sides. The Mc Kinley Park residents understood that the meeting was to be closed since no more progress was to be made during this session. It was clear that Alderman Cárdenas had used the meeting to try to reaffirm his position with support from the charter school so there was no more need to go back and forth.

After the meeting there was a document that showed the loading of the crowd with charter supporters by Alderman Cardenas in a clear conflict of interest as the representative of the 12th Ward constituency.

The only other news coverage of the event was by reporter Mariano Gielis of Univision, which aired the report of the meeting as its headline story on the ten o’clock news. The lead was “Molestos y enfurecidos padres de esa comunidad por la poca transparencia en la decisi├│n de construir una escuela.” The translated headline:

“Upset and angry parents of the community for the lack of transparency in the decision to build a school.” Link to news report is here:

Monday, April 15, 2013

Concept Schools expansion of CMSA stopped by community opposed to Gulenists managed charter schools

Gulenist operated charter schools in the midwest are under the Concept Schools management, headed by liar Salim Ucan.  Salim aka Salim the Slime has had many problems with paying back h1-b Visa fees and other schools being denied.
A charter school company has pulled out of a possible Lincoln Square location after residents protested the school at a neighborhood meeting.
A Concept Schools representative said community resistance and poor timing led officials to withdraw their request for the charter school’s location. The charter school management company applied for a zoning change at 2050 W. Balmoral Ave. with Ward 40 Ald. Patrick O’Connor earlier in March.
Residents and members of the Chicago Teachers Union objected the proposal at a Bowmanville Community Organization meeting March 21. A 70-person crowd convened outside of the North Community Bank on Western Avenue, and BCO representatives had to limit the number of residents inside the bank due to fire code restrictions.
The meeting was the same night CPS announced nearby Trumbull Elementary School was on a list of 54 schools to close in the fall of 2013, when the proposed charter school would open.
“It was probably the worst timing for us to be there that night,” Concept Schools Vice President Salim Ucan told Patch. “We kind of expected that. Alderman O’Connor had given us a head’s up on what the issues might be, so we knew going in that we may face some challenges."
Ucan said he understood the community’s perspective on the new charter school because of its close proximity to Trumbull.
“It doesn’t make sense to shut down the facility and have an empty building and build another facility two blocks from it,” he said.
Read Entire Article here

Chicago Math and Science Academy (CMSA), under Concept Schools takes Trip to Turkey

Over Spring Break, some members of our CMSA family went to Turkey as part of the annual Spring Break International trips organized by Concept Schools.
A group of 42 CMSA students, parents, teachers and chaperons had a chance to visit Turkey’s major cities such as Istanbul, Izmir, Bursa, and Kayseri where they explored the country’s major touristic attractions. They had the opportunity to experience the culture and traditions first hand and taste the various flavors of Turkish cuisine. All participants admitted to having enjoyed the trip and many of them are eager to visit Turkey once again.
We would like to thank all of our participants for making our trip so enjoyable. We also appreciate the effort Concept Schools put into creating such a well organized trip for us.

posing in front of the former Church St. Hagia Sophia, converted to the Grand Mosque now a museum with no mention of the original builders of the one - time church.
isn't there something creepy about a church converted to a mosque?