Chicago To Close 61 Schools

0 Shares

CHICAGO (UPI) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration announced the closing of 61 schools to help avoid a projected $1 billion budget shortfall next year.

City officials said the school closures would affect approximately 30,000 children, mostly in kindergarten through eighth grade.

Emanuel has prodded officials for months to work on the downsizing of the school district to help soften the blow of next year’s deficit, the Chicago Tribune reported Thursday.

“We have resources that are spread much too thin,” said Todd Babbitz, the district’s chief transformation officer.

The closures, and upgrades of remaining schools to handle the influx of new students, are expected to initially cost the city $233 million, though the district projects a savings of $560 million over the next decade.

Anxious parents expressed concern over students’ displacement and potentially longer and more dangerous walks to a new school, the Tribune reported.

Some youngsters were worried, too.

“People there may be fighting,” said fourth-grader Jayshawn Vinson, who will have to walk an additional mile to school over the busy Martin Luther King Drive. “They may be shooting. I don’t know what will happen in the neighborhood.”

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

Since 1907, United Press International (UPI) has been a leading provider of critical information to media outlets, businesses, governments and researchers worldwide.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.