A common theme I noticed came across most stories discussing the CPS school closings is that of parents concern for their children’s safety. DNAinfo wrote a piece called CPS School Closings: ‘I Am Completely Disgusted’ which really caught my attention given it speaks to outrage that exists in the communities affected by these closings. Many of the parents quoted in this story claim a main concern for them in regards to the closing of their children’s schools is that of how far they’ll have to walk to get to school. Particularly, in neighborhoods with high crime rates in which gangs and violence are just around the corner.
I too, have heard this first hand from students attending public schools who are afraid that the consolidation of schools will cause greater gang violence with students coming in from different areas of a neighborhood.
In covering the CPS School Closings, I am looking to gain a more in-depth look as to what safety concerns these school closing pose on the children of the Humboldt Park/Wicker Park neighborhood. I am going to attend one of the upcoming Public meetings at the CPS central office on April 29th, in order to hear what the city has to say in terms of how it is going to deal with the tensions these schools closings might cause as well as hear first hand what parents affected by these closings have to say.
In developing my story, I’m looking to focus on the safety issues the CPS school closings will pose on the Humboldt Park/ Wicker Park students attending schools that are closing such as DuPrey and Lafayette and explore whether or not there are safety methods put in place to address these safety concerns.