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Mauricio Peña, Chalkbeat Chicago

Chicago Schools See COVID Vaccination Rates Backslide With A Wave Of New Students

The average school vaccination rate is 39.6 percent across all schools. Rates remain the lowest at predominantly Black schools on the South and West sides, according to a data analysis by Chalkbeat.


South Side School Confronts A Wave Of Grief After Losing 2 Students To Gun Violence

More than 50 school-aged children were shot and killed and hundreds more were wounded in 2021. “They’re not just dealing with this in school. This is happening in their neighborhoods," one community organizer said.

Englewood, Chatham, Auburn Gresham

On Chicago’s First Day Of School, A Mix Of Enthusiasm And Jitters

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and schools CEO Pedro Martinez are hoping for a better year after two tumultuous ones navigating the pandemic’s massive disruption to learning.


It’s The First Day Of School In Chicago. Here’s What We’re Watching.

Two-and-a-half tumultuous years of shuttered buildings, quarantines, virtual learning and budget cuts have taken a toll on the city’s school system. 


Chicago Public Schools Students Return To Class With Looser COVID-19 Rules

CPS will continue its mask-optional policy and school-based COVID-19 testing, but there is no quarantine requirement for students exposed to coronavirus, unless they test positive.


More Than 1,400 Seats Remain Unfilled On Chicago’s Local School Councils

South and West side schools have the highest number of unfilled seats, particularly at schools in Garfield Park, Little Village, New City, Englewood, Roseland, Grand Crossing and Chatham.


Chicago Schools Started Removing Police Two Years Ago. What’s Happened Since?

CPS empowered local schools councils to make the decision to keep or remove police two years ago. Because the district has released few details about the impact, it’s hard to tell if a different approach to safety is working.


Chicago Board Of Education Approves $9.4 Billion Budget For 2022-23

It's a $200 million increase over the previous year’s budget. But parents and union leaders say schools are still not getting what they need to address academic and mental health fallout from the pandemic.


Chicago Delays Plan For New Near South Side High School Amid Mounting Concerns

The proposal would put a high school where the Harold Ickes Homes once stood near 24th and State streets. 

Bridgeport, Chinatown, McKinley Park

Chicago Public Schools Requires Masks At 1 School, 20 Other Classrooms As COVID Cases Increase

Chicago Public Schools cases have increased in recent weeks, surpassing what it saw at its previous peak during the Omicron surge.


Stacy Davis Gates Elected Chicago Teachers Union President

The incumbent leadership group known as Caucus of Rank and File Educators will retain power over the Chicago Teachers Union for another three years, but they face growing opposition.


The Chicago Teachers Union Votes On Its Leadership Friday. What’s At Stake?

A mayoral election and a transition to an elected school board loom during the next CTU leadership’s three-year term, with the potential to redraw an often combative relationship with the city. 


Chicago Public Schools CEO Tests Positive For COVID-19

Martinez, who is fully vaccinated and boosted, is experiencing mild symptoms. He began experiencing cold-like symptoms on Wednesday before testing positive on Thursday.


TikTok Videos And Teacher Calls: How A South Side Chicago School Increased Vaccine Uptake

In December, only 5.4 percent of Dunne students were fully vaccinated. But in the past few months, the school has seen an increase in uptake to 42.3 percent, close to CPS' overall average.

Roseland, Pullman

Chicago’s Virtual Academy Will Return This Fall, But Little Is Known After Its 1st Year: ‘It’s Been A Black Box’

Some have questioned the curriculum, and others say the Virtual Academy isn't providing enough support for English language learners or meeting the needs of children with disabilities. 


Chicago Teachers Union, Parents Blast Steep Budget Cuts To Little Village School: ‘We Cannot Take Another Cut’

Zapata Academy was slated to lose about 13 percent of its budget next fall — a cut that could claim eight teaching positions and a preschool classroom. The district has since said it will reverse a portion of this cut.

Pilsen, Little Village, Back of the Yards

Chicago Leaders Announce 15,000 Summer Jobs For Teens And Young Adults

Jobs, volunteer opportunities and arts programs will be available at Chicago Public Schools, Chicago Park District, Chicago Public Libraries and other city agencies.


How A Grammy-Nominated Chicago Teacher Is Using Music To Help Students Heal

Over the past six years, Trevor Nicholas' student ensembles have premiered works at the Lyric Opera of Chicago, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, the Harris Theater and Wrigley Field.

Uptown, Edgewater, Rogers Park

What 5 Graphics Tell Us About COVID Vaccine Disparity In Chicago Schools

Vaccination rates at Chicago Public Schools range from just 6.7 percent of students to over 90 percent.


Chicago Moves Up School Start Day This Fall To Aug. 22

The upcoming school year is now poised to start Aug. 22 and end June 7. It will be the earliest start of school for CPS students in recent memory.

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