New CPS Budget Seems To Put Emphasis On Neighborhood Schools

Craig Dellimore
August 09, 2019 - 7:30 am



CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The proposed new budget for the Chicago Public Schools seems to make neighborhood schools the top priority.

Mayor Lightfoot helped unveil the $7.7-billion CPS budget, which includes $619-million in what are called critical “building” improvements at 300 schools across the city. 

What does that money buy?

"It includes directing $30-million towards building state-of-the-art science labs, $30-million towards capital upgrades to align with additional programs, and $85-million expanding access to high-speed internet and devices to ensure every student has access to 21st century education for a 21st century world," Lightfoot said.

Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson said the new budget invests hundreds of millions of dollars in neighborhood schools, pre-K and special programs, like the International Baccalaureates.

"The investment I am most proud of is the addition of 95 professionals in our schools. This will include social workers, case managers, and nurses," Jackson said.

The Chicago Teachers Union is demanding that more money go to increasing personnel and reducing class sizes, and they want those things in the contract. The CTU has threatened a strike vote, but Mayor Lightfoot said there’s no reason they can’t reach an agreement before school begins.

"We are in fact finding and we have gotten a preliminary ruling that will become official later in the month, but there is no reason why we shouldn't use this opportunity right now to get the job done," Lightfoot said.