Plans to erect a new neighborhood elementary school on Chicago's far Southeast Side are in the works, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Sunday.
At a news conference at Gallistel Elementary Language Academy, Emanuel said
the new school is meant to help curb overcrowding at nearby schools.
Other than that, the mayor provided little details about the proposed
$35 million dollar school that would be funded in part by the city's tax increment financing dollars and state government. Ald. John Pope (10th), who was also at
the news conference and answered some questions when the mayor left,
said the school is slated to be constructed at 104th Street and Indianapolis Avenue.
the news was announced, parents at Gallistel acknowledged that they desire relief from overcrowding at the school. They said students from Gallistel are
currently split up among six buildings to help reduce overcrowding. But the parents also raised concerns about what might happen to their school
once the new one is built, noting that the Chicago Board
of Education voted back in May to shutter 50 neighborhood schools.
Once the new school is built, that means “you’ll have the haves and have-nots” in the neighborhood, said Jose Garza, chairman of Gallistel's Local School Council.
assured the parents that those at Gallistel would not be abandoned. A
Chicago Public Schools spokeswoman also told the Chicago Sun-Times after the announcement was made that
Gallistel and another community school, Jane Addams Elementary, would see upgrades. The school district is working with principals at both
schools regarding the needed improvements.