CHICAGO (CBS) — Students and parents from Chicago charter schools boarded two dozen busses Tuesday morning for a trip to Springfield to lobby lawmakers who are considering a raft of bills charter advocates see as a threat.
WBBM Newsradio’s Mike Krauser reports the group rallied in a parking lot outside U.S. Cellular Field, chanting “great schools can’t wait,” before boarding buses headed to the Illinois State Capitol.
“There are 12 different bills in Springfield right now up for consideration that, if all passed, would really do damage to the charter model,” said Andrew Broy, president of the Illinois Network of Charter Schools. “They would stop a charter appeal route at the state level, and reregulate charter schools in negative ways.”
Broy said he believes charter schools are under attack.
“It’s a combination; unions, opposition groups, certain elected officials think charters aren’t right for their neighborhoods, but parents disagree,” he said.
The parents and students will sit down with lawmakers to ask them to support charter schools.
“Some are on spring break, but some are with us on field trips for civics,” he said.
Charter school parent Lucy Reese said, the way she sees it, her kids are in a safer, less-disruptive environment at charter schools.
“I want to make sure that not only that our generation of kids continue to go to charter schools, that we have generations to come to continue to go to charter schools,” she said. “They need to exist.”
She said her kids have been in charter schools for 14 years, and are getting a good education.