CHICAGO (CBS) – Chicago Public Schools officials say they will build a library at Whittier Elementary School in Pilsen, in the wake of a standoff with parents that began last month.
The parents had been camping out at Whittier’s condemned field house, insisting that CPS convert it into a library for students, rather than tear it down to make way for an athletic field. They took their protest to CPS’ downtown headquarters Monday morning.
CPS officials said the school system will put the library inside the school building and lease the field house building for $1 a year to community activists.
Representatives for the parents were not immediately available for comment.
A small group of parents were allowed into CPS Headquarters, 125 S. Clark St., in an attempt to meet with school chief Ron Huberman. Earlier, parents and community leaders pitched tents and held an overnight vigil at the building.
Newsradio 780’s Regine Schlesinger reports that Huberman was not available to meet with them.
LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Regine Schlesinger Reports
“We’re looking for our Superman. Let’s see if it’s Huberman,” said Whittier parent Araceli Gonzalez. “I mean, show us. Show us your face. What have we done? We’re not dangerous.”
Included in the parents’ demands is a promise by CPS that it will provide all required permits for rehab work on the building.
Beginning in mid-September, parents held a 33-day sit-in at the building. They resisted when police came to ask them to leave, and at one point, CPS turned off the gas at the building – an action that earned the wrath of the City Council.
CBS 2’s Jim Williams contributed to this report.