Whittier Parents Leave Field House

Say they look forward to continued coversations

Thursday, Oct 28, 2010  |  Updated 1:24 PM CDT
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Whittier Parents Leave Field House

NBCChicago.com

The parent-staged sit-in at a field house adjacent to Whittier Elementary School in Pilsen is over.

More than six weeks after the group started camping out in the facility to demand it be saved from the wrecking ball and turned into a library and community center, the parents packed up their things, according to the Chicago Tribune

They felt confident that conversations would continue after receiving a signed letter from Chicago Public Schools CEO Ron Huberman.

Huberman was given approval by the school board Wednesday to offer parents a signed letter outlining the terms of an agreement that would save the building. The parents will be allowed to hold the lease on the building for $1 a year after they organize a non-profit  group to manage it and make the necessary repairs. CPS won't build a library in the building, but Whittier Elementary will receive a new one.

A CPS spokeswoman said the parents can build their own library in the field house if it meets code specifications.

Early last week, Huberman offered a compromise to parents:  the field house would be offered to a community group and the library that parents so badly want for the children will be constructed inside the school. 

CPS had originally wanted to tear down the field house, deeming it structurally unsafe.

What remains an issue is where the library will ultimately be located, the Tribune noted.  The school building is small and parents have been reticent to the notion of using space in the newly renovated science and computer labs.

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