• Noon, Tuesday, June 23: Press conference via Zoom (pre-registration required – contact Alexis at alexis@unitedworkingfamilies.org or via cell at 330-201-4433 to register).

Members of CPS community demand CBOE take action in support of ALL students; schools should not reopen without police-free schools or proper PPE, nurses, and other health precautions.

CHICAGO—Members of the CPS community are speaking out in support of police-free schools and urging the CBOE to ensure that schools reopen with the proper precautions concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. Activists will hold a press conference at noon on Tuesday, June 23rd via Zoom (pre-registration required – contact Alexis at alexis@unitedworkingfamilies.org or via cell at 330-201-4433 to register).

Black and Latinx student-led organizations and activists have been demanding for years that CPS remove CPD officers from their hallways. Their calls for justice and equity have been lifted up by the recent calls police accountability as a result of the murder of George Floyd, but their message remains the same: Student Resources Officers (SROs) don’t create a safer environment for students; instead they perpetuate the racist school-to-prison pipeline while taking valuable resources away from real restorative justice programs in our schools.

These students along with the parents, teachers and staff that support them have looked at the data, experienced the brutality and are calling for police-free schools. Members of the CPS community are calling on the $33 million contract between CPS and CPD to be better used for restorative justice coordinators, social workers, nurses, trauma supports and other critical programs in schools.

The current global pandemic has brought new, unique challenges for CPS students and staff. The switch to remote learning exposed the digital divide in the city, exacerbating the inequities in our education system. COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted the families and communities of our Latinx and Black students in terms of confirmed cases and deaths.

CPS acknowledges that they want students to physically return to schools in the Fall, but this cannot be done without the proper PPE, proper sanitation resources, and healthcare officials properly staffed on Day 1. A student cannot and must not walk into a building that lacks a nurse every day during a global pandemic. Students and staff must have readily available proper PPE, schools need smaller class sizes that allow for safe social distancing, and our schools must have the resources for proper sanitation practices, advocates say.

The mayor’s hand-picked board is expected to take up the issue at Wednesday’s board meeting.

WHAT: Members of the CPS community in a virtual press conference demand the CBOE take action in support of students and staff ahead of CPS reopening concerning police free schools and proper COVID-19 protections.

WHO:  Supporting Community Organizations: Chicago Teachers Union, Brighton Park Neighborhood Council, Kenwood-Oakland Community Organization, Journey for Justice, Black Lives Matter Chicago, Parents 4 Teachers, Southside Together Organizing for Power (STOP), Il Raise Your Hand, Brotha Jitu, Pilsen Alliance, Grassroots Education Movement, Northside Actions for Justice, Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, Action Now, and #CopsOutCPS Coalition,

WHEN: Tuesday, June 23rd at 12:00 PM

WHERE: Zoom (Pre-registration required; contact Alexis at alexis@unitedworkingfamilies.org or via cell at 330-201-4433 to register)