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Sped kids will be OK during school closings, CPS says
The parent group Raise Your Hand on Tuesday asked several parents of special education students, mostly autistic students, to speak publicly about their grave concerns about potential school closings. All their schools are on the preliminary closure list.
RYH says the 129 school list includes 6,000 special education students and 39 schools that house special education “cluster programs,” meaning they serve profoundly disabled kids.
The parents called the potential closures “appalling” and “inhumane.” One mom said her disabled daughter is on her fourth school in four years and doesn’t want her school closed because her sixth grade daughter has finally found the right fit.
This is CPS’ response:
“As a mother and life-long educator, CEO Byrd-Bennett believes that every child in every neighborhood of Chicago deserves access to a high quality education that prepares them to succeed. Right now that is not happening and we need to make some tough choices. By consolidating schools we can focus on getting every child into a better performing school close to their home. We understand there are concerns, but we want to assure parents and the community that we have developed a specialized plan for transitioning students with disabilities in the event that their school needs to be closed. CEO Byrd-Bennett is committed to ensuring that students with disabilities are supported through any transitions that arise as part of this work.”
This may be attributed to Robyn Ziegler, CPS spokeswoman.