Mayor’s appointed top school execs and hand-picked board have engaged in chronic neglect of public schools’ facilities needs – particularly on South and West Sides.
CHICAGO, November 26, 2018—Chicago Teachers Union President Jesse Sharkey issued the followingin response to news that 20 Chicago schools lacked heat today.
“Students in twenty schools were robbed today of warmth and educational stability – because the mayor’s appointees who run our schools simply don’t care about their learning conditions. CPS’ un-elected board of education is not fit to oversee a dog park, let alone a school district of over 500 schools. Their neglect of neighborhood public schools is chronic and unconscionable – and for years, they have particularly undercut schools on Chicago’s South and West Sides, through deep budget cuts and disastrous privatization schemes. Every single month, parents, educators and community residents stream into CPS headquarters to appeal to the board to fix a broken boiler or repair crumbling walls and windows. Yet this board continues to violate the state’s educational facilities management law, spending hundreds of millions of dollars in new construction that benefits more affluent neighborhoods – while ignoring billions of dollars in needs at schools that already exist.
“The mayoral bureaucrats who run our public school district have dropped the ball for years in addressing dire needs in our schools. Today’s disaster simply underscores this failure. CPS must immediately release the funds to provide repairs at these afflicted schools. And the state’s new governor needs to immediately sign legislation to approve an elected, representative school board. It’s long past time to allow the people of this city to elect school board members who actually care about the educations of our students, instead of covering for the political fortunes of the individual who occupies the mayor’s seat.”