CHICAGO – State Rep. Juliana Stratton, D-Chicago, is fighting to give families a voice in their children’s education by passing legislation creating an elected representative school board to lead the Chicago Public Schools (CPS).
“Too often, parents in our communities see our schools are going in the wrong direction, but don’t feel like they can do anything about it because the school board is beholden to insiders, not our families,” Stratton said. “An elected school board will empower residents to guide our schools in the right direction to allow our children to meet their full potential.”
Currently, the Chicago Board of Education members are appointed by the mayor of Chicago. The Stratton-sponsored House Bill 1774 would change Chicago’s current appointed board into an elected one starting with the 2019 municipal election. Registered voters with residency in the Chicago electoral district for at least one year immediately preceding the election would be eligible to run for a board member position. House Bill 1774 would split Chicago into 20 districts that would each elect a representative for the board. Additionally, voters would select one at-large board member city-wide to serve as the board president.
“When parents are locked out of decision-making, you will see more schools shut down in neighborhoods affecting students of color,” Stratton continued. “You can’t have justice for kids if you don’t have democracy.”
The Chicago School Board bill now goes to the Senate for consideration.