BOARDWATCH: The Big Lie(s) from CPS... 'We reject all school actions and any proposed turnaround which only promotes crony capitalism and not a quality education for our children.'

[The following remarks were delivered to the February 27, 2013 meeting of the Chicago Board of Education.]

Surrounded by community leaders and parents, Dwayne Truss, one of the leaders of the Austin community opposition to the school closings, exposed the lies of the "underutilization crisis" and the "billion dollar deficit" during remarks at the February 27, 2013 meeting of the Chicago Board of Education. Substance photo by George N. Schmidt.“If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” - Joseph Goebbels

The feedback from your sham community engagement meetings has been overwhelming rejection of the your attempt to mislead the public about your manufactured "utilization crises."

Your messengers presented power points stating that the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is facing a $1 billion dollar budget deficit for the next school year and that the City of Chicago lost 145,000 school age children since 2000 are both misleading. CPS finished the past three school years with surpluses and a WBEZ radio analysis documented that CPS only lost 28,200 students since 2000.

To demonstrate how absurd this process has been, of the seven schools from Austin currently on the list, De Priest and McNair are newer buildings, May was recently renovated, Lewis is budgeted for $8.5 million dollars in ongoing renovations. Emmet had its chimney repaired and play area finally repaired. Where's the savings? Are you setting up schools for an AUSL turnaround?

May, Armstrong, and Key each have an annex. If you were to move the students into one building, each school's utilization rate increases. The original Key School building will become overcrowded as a result of occupying one building. Per your capital budget, CVS High School with a utilization rate of 34% is budgeted for a $75 million renovation. Al Raby High School with a 50% rate is budgeted for a $21 million dollar renovation. Obviously you are willing to spend money on underutilized schools.

In conclusion, to add insult to the insult, putting AUSL controlled schools such as Piccolo, Bethune, Herzl, and Stagg on the list must be an attempt at humor because we all know that

CPS is not closing any AUSL schools no matter the utilization rate or the school performance.

The mayor and the corporate community sole purpose is privatize schools neighborhood schools

in African-American and Latino communities. We reject all school actions and any proposed turnaround which only promotes crony capitalism and not a quality education for our children.


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