by 89 WLS web staff
Chicago Public Schools has announced plans to close 61 school buildings.
In all, 54 public schools will close. Six schools are slated for turnaround. 11 would be merged.
Chicago Teacher's Union President Karen Lewis is not happy about the closings.
“Rahm Emanuel has become the ‘murder mayor,’ Lewis said. "He is murdering public services. Murdering our ability to maintain public sector jobs and now he has set his sights on our public schools. But we have news for him: We don’t intend to die. This is not Detroit. We are the city of big shoulders and so we intend to put up a fight. We don’t know if we can win, but if you don’t fight, you will never win at all."
She added, "“The people of this city can no longer sit back and allow this mayor, his school board and his corporate cronies to run roughshod over democracy. They’ve turned their backs on affordable housing; turned their backs on job creation; and, now they’re turning their backs on our students, their families and our schools."
“These actions unnecessarily expose our students to gang violence, turf wars and peer-to-peer conflict. Some of our students have been seriously injured as a result of school closings. One died. Putting thousands of small children in harm’s way is not laudatory," Lewis said during a news conference Thursday to talk about the changes.
It's all part of a plan to cut down on the district's $1 billion deficit. CPS says the closings will save the district $560 million over 10 years.
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