Thus, this article has two parts. The first part will examine the slow accretion of overpaid and underqualified outsiders who are now holding the top ranks at CPS. This part will also examine how, over time, the public would become more and more aware of the outlines and ideology behind what amounted to an undisclosed plan to radically reshape the public schools of the third largest school system in the USA with virtually no democratic public input or debate.
The second part will discuss one iteration of that phenomenon: The unprecedented expansion, in both personnel and cost, of the publicity department at the nation's third largest school system. To put a start point on what is now a bloated "Communications" staff at CPS: when mayoral control began in 1995 at CPS, there was one person, former Sun-Times education reporter Maribeth Vander Weele, handling all information requests and publicity for the school system.