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Rahm Emanuel
Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
Tue Apr 16, 2013

West Siders Hold Nearby Charters Responsible For Emmet Elementary's Shrinking Enrollment

Emmet Elementary School’s utilization rate is 66 percent, higher than a handful of other Austin neighborhood schools.

Even still, the Chicago Public Schools wants to close it at the end of the year, and that decision continues to puzzle some West Side community members and parents who spoke out against the action before Emmet’s final community meeting last night.

“Unfortunately we have an administration with this corporate ideology of privatizing education that uses our data to punish schools rather than use them as tools to go ahead and improve our children’s education,” said Dwayne Truss with the Austin Community Action Council. “And that’s wrong.” Read more »

PI Original
by Ashlee Rezin
Mon Apr 15, 2013

Chicago Teachers Union Plans To Intensify Political Activity, Push For New Voters (VIDEO)

The Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) is preparing to intensify political activity and push for new voters with a citywide campaign against Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the mayoral-appointed Chicago Board of Education. According to CTU President Karen Lewis, the union could begin canvasing for new mayoral candidates, and selecting nominees for Illinois’ political offices, as early as next week.

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
Mon Apr 15, 2013

South Siders Blame Emanuel For School Closings At Canter Middle School Public Meeting

Parents and South Side residents called the Chicago Public Schools’ plan to shut down 54 schools at the end of the year a violent and disrespectful act during the second and final community meeting regarding the closure of Miriam G. Canter Middle School, located in the city's Kenwood community.

CPS officials at Friday night's meeting dodged most of the frustrated community members’ questions, saying they were there to listen and that all public comment would be provided to CPS Chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett.

“The fact that you cannot speak back to us when we’re coming to you on our hands and knees to beg for our damn school, it’s outrageous,” said Hyde Park resident Jill Petty. Read more »

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
Fri Apr 12, 2013

Community Groups Picket Chicago Urban League, Demand Meeting With Andrea Zopp On School Closings (VIDEO)

Members of Action Now and the Kenwood Oakland Community Organization (KOCO) protested outside of the Chicago Urban League Thursday, demanding its leader and Chicago Board of Education member Andrea Zopp sit down with them and examine the civil rights impact of school closings.

They also called on Zopp to support a one-year moratorium on the Chicago Public Schools’ recent round of proposed school actions and work with them on a sustainable education transformation plan.

“Civil rights organizations are supposed to work with the community organizations and the people on the ground to get clarity on what is happening in our neighborhoods so that their advocacy is in touch with our daily lives,” said protestor Cathy Dale, a Local School Council member at Mollison Elementary and King College Prep. Read more »

Quick Hit
by Ellyn Fortino
Wed Apr 10, 2013

Unions Unite, Issue Joint Report Against School Closings

Members and leaders of three unions representing workers in the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) system criticized the city’s recent round of school actions in a joint report issued Tuesday, saying school closings hurt children, struggling neighborhoods, and working families.

They’ve called on the Chicago Board of Education, CPS and Mayor Rahm Emanuel not to close any schools.

“Strong schools are supposed to create strong neighborhoods,” said SEIU* Local 1 spokeswoman Izabela Miltko. “We all believe that Chicago needs to protect and invest in its children and not tear apart communities, tear apart schools.”

Read more »

Quick Hit
by Ashlee Rezin
Tue Apr 9, 2013

Catching Up With Robin Kelly On Election Day (VIDEO)

It’s no mystery who former State Rep. Robin Kelly voted for this morning.

At 6:15 a.m., Kelly, the Democratic candidate in the race to fill the vacant seat in Illinois’ 2nd Congressional District, was the first to cast her ballot at the Matteson Community Center, precinct 30.

“I feel great,” said Kelly in an interview with Progress Illinois just after she voted. “I’m encouraged, of course, but a little tired; it’s been a long road.”

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