CHICAGO (CBS) —
At one Chicago public high school, there was no stampede when the bell rang today and no line at the door. In fact, there were only 12 students.
The sprawling campus of Dyett High School is big enough for hundreds or even thousands of students, but you could just about count today’s student body on two hands,
CBS 2’s Roseanne Tellez reports it’s unusual to say the least. But when the school board voted to phase-out this school, seniors were offered a chance to graduate there and Tuesday 12 of them showed up to get on with it.
“It was same kids in every single class…it was like two real teachers,” said Dyett student Kenneth Brown.
He said they took gym class on a computer.
Most of their fellow students transferred since Dyett is being phased out. But for this group of seniors, staying beat the alternative, believing that they will get more attention.
The Chicago Teachers Union has asked the board to reconsider.
“One of the problems is that children have actually been pressured to leave the school and what’s unfortunate is that the community has come together and put together a great program,” said CTU President Karen Lewis.
Alderman Will Burns agrees, telling us, “I’m on the record as opposing the phase out of Dyett School. The question is how do you make it a school where parents want to send their kids.”
As local groups scramble to come up with a solution. These seniors plan to stick it out.
CPS tells us Dyetts’s budget for the year is $1,085,000. Alderman Burns says he’s hopeful that with the right plan, the board might reverse its decision to close the school. He says the school has a lot going for it, it is good shape, it has a swimming pool and a brand new gym, and it’s the only open enrollment school in Bronzeville. They’re not giving up yet.