Chicago students plan March 4 City Hall protest against proposed school budget cuts

Students from at least two Chicago high schools announced on March 3 that they are planning to protest at Chicago's City Hall against proposed school budget cuts on Thursday, March 4, 2010, beginning at 4:00 p.m. The announcement says that the students will meet on the Clark St. side of City Hall and protest and do "street theater".

According to a "Media Alert" press release dated March 3 and issued by CORE (the Caucus Of Rank-and-file Educators)...

Chicago Students to Protest Massive Budget Cuts, Blame TIFs and Vendor Contracts for Budget Shortfall

Who: Students from Lawndale Little Village High School

What: Protest/Street Theater

When: March 4th, 2010 at 4:30

Where: City Hall/Clark Street Side

Why: CPS Officials anticipate a $900 million deficit with massive cuts to follow. Students are worried that these cuts will affect their learning.

Contact: Kellina Mojica, Julian HS, 773.629.0453

Emmanuel Reynoso, Lawndale Little Village High School, 773.701.0388

Students will be assembling at City Hall at 4:30pm to draw attention to the injustice of $900 million in education cuts scheduled for the next year. For senior Ricardo Flores the cuts are unjust, “our city taxes are being given to private schools and companies, that money is better spent on our public schools so we can be successful and go to college.” According to senior Leo Rivera, “when the Board of Education cuts funds, they are cutting a chance at success and the dreams of students who want to be something in life.”

Students will ask the Mayor Daley and CEO of the schools Ron Huberman to find the funds to solve the budget crisis without cutting after school programs, teacher positions or benefits. Senior Monica Ochoa questioned whether the city can’t find the money elsewhere,“how can they want us to have education if they are giving $250 million a year of school money to TIF districts?” Julian senior Kellina Mojica asks Huberman and the Board of Education to tighten their belts on behalf of CPS students, “instead of using CPS money for hybrid, retreats and fine dining, they should use these resources for students and staff.”

The students will also be joined by teachers, community activists and parents from around the city who want to participate in the national day of action to defend public education.


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