Another New Charter School Moves Ahead Despite Community Opposition
By Jim Vail
Second City Teacher
A controversial charter school in McKinley Park was approved and will go ahead despite a divided community that opposed the school.
In McKinley Park, the Concept School will enroll 432 K-8 students when it opens its doors in September, with plans to open grades 9-12 in the future, according to DNAinfo.com
Despite the Chicago Board of Education not approving this Turkish run charter company that operates the Math and Science Academy Charter School in Rogers Park, Alderman George Cardenas gave the go ahead.
The alderman was forced to have a public hearing in which residents questioned the environmental problems with having a school located in a former factory.
The community was also divided on the need for a charter school in the Back of the Yards community when the Board of Education is closing so many public schools.
The May 29th story in DNAinfo.com highlighted the fact that the school, according to the charter school, has a big demand.
I had to go much further down the story to read that the community was strongly divided, and upset with the alderman's anti-democratic tendencies to run the charter school through the zoning process for approval.
While Second City Teacher applauds the wonderful reporting DNAinfo.com is providing with the massive cut backs of the city's two dailies - Chicago Tribune and Sun-Times, it is appearing that more and more stories are beginning to applaud the ruling class's plan to privatize public education via corporate charter schools.
Concept schools has been controversial for its ties to the Gulen Movement, some Turkish religious cult. The school claims its charter schools are not connected to the movement.
Many cults like Gulen, as well as the Scientologists, are getting in on the game to open privately run charter schools that collect tax payer dollars.
Big money is the name of the game in the charter school business that is openly anti-union (CMSA in Rogers Park has been involved in a long protracted fight against its teachers forming a union).
It has been noted that foreign entities are promising to invest big money in charter schools, so that they can receive H1 Visas and be legal in the land of milk and honey.
Second City Teacher will continue to watch this latest land grab.
Like they say, follow the money trail!