Ten years ago, when Chicago Public Schools began the long process of planning a new Miles Davis Elementary, Englewood residents and Miles Davis teachers rejoiced. A school with falling ceilings and basement classrooms that had leaky overhead pipes would be replaced by spacious new digs that neighborhood residents would boast about.
Instead, a crowd of about 40 people showed up at a hearing today, upset that at least some of Davis' staff will likely find themselves without jobs at the new school.
Some in the group of parents and teachers brought signs with them to underscore their concerns.
"To me, the teachers are like parents, a second parent," she said. "Most of the teachers there now are my old teachers."
The new Miles Davis, 6740 S.
Paulina, will house up to 900
students in 100,000 square feet of space, and will be a math and science magnet school.
It will enroll Davis' pre-kindergarten through third grade students, as well as fourth- through eighth-graders from Vernon Johns Middle Academy, 6936 S. Hermitage Ave.
Miles Davis and Johns Academy
teachers and administrators won't be automatically transferred to the
new building. Instead, a CPS spokesman said, they will have to apply for jobs there.
"You wanted a new school. You got the new school. Now you don't want the old school closed?" Bates asked.Rhonda Washington, Davis' Local School Council chair and a parent of three students there, said she's comfortable with the current roster of teachers.
Paul Bowker, a Chicago-area journalist with 25 years of experience, covers Chicago Public Schools for the Daily News.