A federal judge on Thursday denied a request to halt the closure of more than four dozen Chicago Public Schools.
U.S. District Court Judge John Z. Lee said plaintiffs failed to prove the crux of their case: that students with disabilities and African American students would be disproportionately harmed by the closures.
The request was made in Chicago Teachers Union-backed lawsuits filed by parents in May.
Wrote Lee in his opinion:
"... although Plaintiffs allege that their children will suffer academic harm,they will be sending their children to higher performing schools in the fall, such as Faraday Elementary School. Similarly, although Plaintiffs allege that their children will face greater safety risks when walking through unfamiliar neighborhoods to their new schools, only one of the Plaintiffs’ children will be required to walk to a new school building. The others will be provided busing or other transportation services or will remain in their current school building."
The ruling was celebrated by CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett.
"Today's court ruling supports our belief that every child in every neighborhood throughout the District deserves access to a high-quality education that prepares them for college, career and life," she said in a written statement. "We are committed to ensuring that every child can live up to their potential."
- CPS to Shutter 54 Schools in Closure Plan
- Teachers, Supporters Rally in Opposition of School Closures
- List of School Closures / Consolidations
- Schools CEO: Delaying Closures Would be "Criminal"
The first day of school is Aug. 26.