Sources: 52 Chicago Public Schools may close

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Sources at city hall a decision has been reached on the closings of 52 Chicago Public Schools.

Sources say the number they say stood at around 60 earlier this week with political wrangling to save some schools still underway.
Karen Lewis, Chicago Teachers Union President issues an angry and pointed response saying, “This city cannot destroy that many schools. It will send our district into chaos. These actions will put our students’ safety and academics at risk and will further destabilize our neighborhoods.”

She goes on to take a shot directly at the leadership of Chicago Public Schools, “We do not have a utilization crisis. What we have is a credibility crisis.”

On the list, the Sun Times reports, two schools in Alderman Howard Brookins’ 21st Ward, Mahalia Jackson and Garrett Morgan elementary schools.

Public schools chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett issued a statement of her saying in part,  “For too long children in certain parts of Chicago have been cheated out of the resources they need to succeed in the classroom because they are in underutilized, under resourced schools. I will soon make recommendations on underutilized schools I believe we must consolidate so we can get those students safely into a higher performing school that will have all the things they need to learn and succeed.”

CPS has until March 31st to make its school closing recommendations.

CTU is planning a major rally over school closings at Daley Plaza one week from tonight.

Read full statement from CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett (pdf)

Read full statement from CTU President Karen Lewis (pdf)

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  • Jay

    Finally, CPS acknowledges to the public that they denied CPS students resources to succeed. Maybe the teachers can stop taking the blame.

    • Mark

      CTU just insisted on a 7% pay raise over the next three year while the CPS are running a $1 billion annual deficit. How can Karen Lewis then rant about the school closings? The pay raise clearly expediated the closings. There isn't an endless amount of money, and you can't have both. But then I suspect she already knew that when she negotiated the contract.

      • Max

        Mark, it's not a raise. When you work more hours you should receive more pay. Rahm wanted them to work more hours for free. It backfired. If you think they have such a sweet deal go back to school and become a teacher. It's the administrators that are grossly overpaid. Example? Jean-Claude Brizard. You're right, there isn't an endless amount of money. But if you want your kids to have a good education you have to remember, you get what you pay for.

  • Tom Hayden

    The problem is the teachers don't accept ANY part of them blame. If you listen to them they are freaking geniuses. I'm here to tell you, from first hand experience, that some of them are lucky to walk and chew gum at the same time.

    • elyse martin

      That is a nasty untrue comment. Why would you say that? I have been teaching since 1973 and in my experience the majority of teachers have been hard working, dedicated professionals. What would motivate you to bash teachers?

    • Kati

      There are bad apples in every profession. Most teachers are hardworking, caring, doing the best for their students with limited resources. We buy most of our own supplies, pay for our own professional development and act as counselors and surrogate parents when needed. Don't knock a whole group of professionals over a few.

  • Bobby Bailey

    I feel that they’re only targeting the Black and Latino communities!!! It’s sad that this happening further more people need to take a stand because regardless of what they’re trying to do this plan is not going to work either!!!!!!

  • April

    I am distrubed that both Morgan and Jackson are on the list. Both schools serve a significant Special Education population. My child attended the Early Childhood Education program at Morgan and it was phenomenal. It is a shame that no one considered the impact on these students. Both building are newer and better mainted than the option, Gresham. Alderman Brookins needs to step up, the parents need to file ISBE and federal complaints. I can guarantee if these children are sent to Gresham they will not receive the services outlined in their IEPs.

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