In the Frunchroom: Troy LaRaviere

It’s been a busy month behind-the-scenes of The Frunchroom. First, we launched our podcast. (Expect the next episode very soon.) And then Beverly Woods closed and we had to find another venue.

We’re very glad to say the Beverly Arts Center will host us this Tuesday, October 3rd at 730pm.

This edition – our 11th – will be a little different as we’ll have a unifying theme for all our readers: the topic of race, from segregation to identity to integration. We have five great speakers lined up, including Troy LaRaviere.

Troy LaRaviere has been a student, teacher, principal, and parent at both public and private schools in Chicago. He led the #1 ranked neighborhood school in Chicago (Blaine Elementary). In 2013, after two years of unprecedented student improvement at Blaine, Troy became the first Chicago principal to speak openly about the destructive school policies of Chicago’s mayor and unelected school board.

From 2013 to 2016 he continued to lead his school while launching a one-man assault against City Hall’s intimidation of principals, the failings and abuses of school privatizers, disinvestment in school custodial services, the manipulation of school test score data, the misuse and overuse of standardized testing, fiscal recklessness and incompetence on the part of school district officials, and corrupt school district contracts.

Troy was the first and only CPS employee to speak out publicly against the now infamous Barbara Byrd-Bennett SUPES contract long before it became a national scandal. He has had multiple works published in the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Sun-Times, and the Washington Post. In addition, he maintains an education blog that receives between 10,000 and 200,000 views per post.

In 2016 Troy was featured in two campaign ads for presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, one of which was the moving two-minute national TV ad called “America Beyond,” which used Troy’s life story to represent the hope and possibilities of the Sanders campaign.

In February of 2016 he was nominated for the presidency of the Chicago Principals and Administrators Association (CPAA). In an apparent attempt to influence the CPAA election, the mayor’s appointees at CPS abruptly removed Troy from his principal position. However, on May 19, 2016 he won with nearly 70% of the vote. Since assuming the presidency Troy has focused on building a member-driven association that unites principals’ voices to impact state and local policy.

Raised in Bronzeville and now a resident of Beverly, Troy will tell what he describes as “an entirely unbelievable story about my 1986 experience with the Chicago Bears and the Chicago Police Department. Despite its implausibility, it actually happened. Every bit of it.”

Don’t miss The Frunchroom at Tuesday, October 3rd at 730pm at the Beverly Arts Center.

Need a reminder of this event? Click here to RSVP on Facebook.

About Scott Smith

Chicagoan, husband, father, writer.
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