Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials say the district won't approve any new charter schools to open next year.
That announcement comes during the city's race for mayor and ahead of the February municipal election.
Under state law, the school district has to open up its application process for new charter schools each year. The district, however, is not required to approve new charter school applications it receives.
CPS spokesman Bill McCaffrey said the district will issue a request for proposals for new charters in December.
“To ensure adequate time for the process, that RFP would accept applications for schools to open no sooner than the fall of 2016,” McCaffrey told the Chicago Sun-Times.
Declared mayoral candidate Ald. Bob Fioretti (2nd) has criticized the Emanuel administration for closing a record number of public schools and subsequently opening new charters. Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis, who is mulling a mayoral run, has also blasted the school actions under Emanuel's watch, including charter school expansion.
UPDATE 1 (4:25 p.m.): Fioretti released the following statement on the district's decision not to approve any new charter schools next year:
I believe the decision by CPS not to recommend opening any new charter schools in 2015 is a good first step.
For too long, we’ve seen precious resources siphoned away from neighborhood schools and dedicated to privately managed charters. That’s why I introduced two separate pieces of legislation in City Council to suspend charter school expansion until we can find a more equitable solution.
We need to do what’s best for every child in Chicago, and this is a move in the right direction.