Stop the expansion of charter schools in Chicago

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As a soon-to-be educator in the state of Illinois, I am extremely concerned about the future of public education in the city of Chicago, with the threat of charter school expansion looming. I am taking a stand against the expansion of charter schools in the city of Chicago and request that the Illinois School Funding Reform Commission (ISFRC) allocates more funding towards Chicago Public Schools, while voting against the expansion of charter schools and/or imposing a moratorium on charter school expansion. 

For about the last five years, Chicago Public Schools have been faced with a budget crisis, forcing CPS to cut programs, resources, and teachers from their schools. CPS has also been forced to go to the lengths of merging schools and shutting down others altogether due to the unavailability of funds to keep all schools running. The state budget cuts are forcing administration to cut programs that are deemed least important to education, such as arts, physical education, honors, and language classes. Many schools do not have the funding to supply their classrooms with resources, which force teachers to pay for these resources out-of-pocket. Schools have also been forced to reduce the number of teachers and staff per school in order to save the money that they lost from state funding. 

The blame is often put onto an insufficient amount of state funding, as well as Chicago Teachers Union members who are asking for too much. However, studies show that the expansion of charter schools in certain areas of Chicago are stretching Chicago Public School's financial resources even thinner. This is mainly due to the fact that CPS tax revenues finance the creation of charter schools. 

Under-resourced and poorly-funded schools are major causes of poverty and violence within neighborhoods. Give the students of Chicago an opportunity at a properly funded education, and the chance to be successful in their futures. 

We urge you to support the students and staff in Chicago Public Schools, and reject proposals of charter school expansion. 

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