List of possible school closings made public

  • By Claire Bushey
  • Staff Writer
  • January 09, 2009 @ 3:00 PM

Chicago Public Schools officials revealed a list of possible school closings to a parents advocacy group this morning, which published it despite the district’s wishes.
Julie Woestehoff, executive director of Parents United for Responsible Education, or PURE, told the school district she didn’t plan to keep the list secret.
A message sent to the listserv of the Caucus of Rank and File Educators, a group allied with PURE, said the a school district employee asked the parents group not to share the information “so that the staff of the schools on the list would not panic.”
“We informed the staffer that we would not agree to that condition, and that we felt (the parents group) was not a more important stakeholder in this process than the staff of affected schools,” the listserv message said. “We have already been called on the carpet by a high-ranking CPS official for posting this list.”
The Board of Education declined to comment.
“We’re not making any comment on the PURE list,” says CPS spokesman Frank Shufton. “We’ll announce when we have something announce.”
Woestehoff says the Board of Education’s list is an attempt “to take the temperature of the community to see how far they can go.” If the neighborhood fights back, the school will likely remain open.
Those that close could become home to Renaissance 2010 schools. Renaissance 2010 is Mayor Richard Daley’s plan to open 100 new schools by next year, comprising a mix of charter, contract and performance schools.
“I think they’re on a hunt for school buildings,” Woestehoff says.
Jackson Potter, a history teacher at Social Justice High School and a steering committee member of the teachers caucus, says the group was unsurprised that most of the schools slated for closing were in low-income, minority neighborhoods.
This list of schools slated for closing or consolidation could change. The Board of Education plans to unveil the final list next week. Rosemaria Genova, press secretary for the Chicago Teachers Union said the organization will “definitely play a role” in deciding what happens next.
Las Casas Occupational High School, 8401 S. Saginaw Ave. Students would go to their home schools.
South Chicago Community Elementary School, 8255 S. Houston Ave. Students would go to their home schools.
Peabody Elementary School, 1444 W. Augusta Blvd. Students would go to Ogden, Talcott and Lozano elementary schools.
Carpenter School, 1250 W. Erie St. Students would go to the Ogden, Talcott and Lozano elementary schools.
Nia Foundation
Princeton A.C. Elementary School, 5125 S. Princeton Ave. Students would go to their home schools.
Abbott School, 3630 S. Wells St.
Schiller Elementary School, 640 W. Scott St.
Medill Elementary School, 1301 W. 14th St.
Global Visions Academy High School, 2710 E. 89th St., would be consolidated with New Millennium School of Health, 2710 E. 89th St.
Davis Development Center, 9101 S. Jeffery Ave., would be consolidated with Langston Hughes Elementary School in a new building.
Phase out:
Francis Scott Key Public School, 517 N. Parkside Ave. Students would go to Ellington Elementary School, 243 N. Parkside Ave.
Julia C. Lathrop Public School, 1440 S. Christiana Ave. Students would go to  Johnson and Lawndale elementary schools.
Hamilton Elementary School, 1650 W. Cornelia Ave. Students would go to Blaine, Burley and Audubon elementary schools.
Best Practice High School, 2040 W. Adams St.
Reed Elementary School. Students would go to Banneker. Francis W. Parker and Nicholson schools.
Dulles Elementary School, 6311 S. Calumet Ave.
Johnson Elementary School, 1420 S. Albany Ave.
Bethune Elementary School, 3030 N Arthington St.
Ross Elementary School, 6059 S. Wabash Ave.
Holmes Elementary School, 955 W. Garfield Blvd.
Yale Elementary School, 7025 S. Princeton Ave.
Curtis Elementary School, 32 E. 115th St.
Lavizzo Elementary School, 138 W. 109th St.
Fenger Academy High School, 11220 S. Wallace St.

Staff Writer Claire Bushey can be reached at 773-362-5002, ext. 14.