Bruce Rauner, the Republican nominee for Governor of Illinois, has been peddling a narrative for months and months about his daughter's admission to an elite Chicago Public School, Walter Payton College Prep High School. Rauner's claim is that his daughter was admitted to the "elite" Chicago Public School High School "fair and square." Yesterday, according to a Crain's Chicago Business report, Rauner's claims were contradicted that he "never asked for special favors" to admit his daughter into the "elite" Chicago Public School High School. Crain's says that the outgoing Chicago Public Schools Inspector General, James Sullivan, who "investigates waste, fraud and mismanagement for the nation's third-largest school district, offered information that contradicted some of Rauner's public statements."
Rauner has also claimed that his daughter was selected by a process called "principal pick," but Inspector General Sullivan said that is not true, since that process of "principal pick" had not started at that time in 2008. Inspector General Sullivan until now has not discussed the case, but since announcing his retirement from CPS, he has been discussing it openly on WTTW's Chicago Tonight Show and with the Associated Press.
Shortly after the admission in 2009, Rauner's foundation gave a $250,000 donation to a Walter Payton initiative, and of course, Rauner claims the donation had nothing to do with his daughter's admission the year before. Rauner says he has donated to lots of schools over the years.
However, all fingers are pointing in the direction that Rauner played the political clout card and used his vast political influence.
Rich Miller of Capitol Fax also weighed in on the controversy, correcting the record on Rauner and his daughter's admission into the school.
Rauner has up until now, claimed that his daughter's was hurt by her attendance record, which was marred by illness. That was the reason for the rejection and that the family appealed through a principals' discretionary process.
Rich Miller's Capitol Fax said that the argument that his daughter was hurt by scoring low on attendance in her attempt to enroll just isn't true and was not a factor in her initial rejection. "Bruce’s daughter was admitted and enrolled in 2008. CPS changed the attendance factor in admissions in 2009."
Rauner has also argued that his daughter's grades were up to snuff. However, the facts now reveal "her scores didn’t meet Payton admission standards that year."
The initial charge made during the Republican primary that Rauner used "political muscle" to enroll his daughter into the "elite public high school in Chicago" is apparently true. Rauner's daughter could not make it in through "regular order," dad did what any good father would: He made a phone call.
Greg Hinz of Crain's Chicago Business broke the story earlier this year. The "elite" Chicago Public School High School in which Rauner's daughter wanted to enroll, Walter Payton College Prep High School, has become one of the best schools around — not only in the state but the country, where it's respectively ranked second and 45th-best, according to U.S. News & World Report. It is likely a school his daughter wanted to enroll and her dad made it happen, since with Rauner's money any high school would have been possible.
Each year Walter Payton College Prep High School has roughly 200 slots available, with typically 7,000 applicants. Rauner's daughter was one of those 7,000 applicants. Rauner's daughter was turned down at first, but a man like Rauner gets what he wants. He would do what any entitled person would do.
Rauner humorously portrays himself as a political outsider, dedicating his life to fighting against the insiders. If elected governor, he will continue to fight the insiders.
However, the fact is that Rauner "is" the insider influencing the political process. Rauner's daughter, one of his six children, was initially denied admission into Walter Payton College Prep in 2008.