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CPS Plans to Move Frazier Prep, Urban Prep Into Different Buildings

By Emily Morris | November 27, 2013 8:59am
 CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett announced plans to move two schools. (File photo)
CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett announced plans to move two schools. (File photo)
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DNAinfo file photos/Tanveer Ali

CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools announced Wednesday that it plans to move two schools, one on the West Side and the other on the South Side, in an effort to free up some space for schools that have been sharing their campuses.

CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett said in a statement that CPS wants to move North Lawndale charter school Frazier Prep, which has been sharing space with Frazier International Magnet (also known as Frazier IB) at 4027 W. Grenshaw St., into Herzl Elementary School at 3711 W. Douglas Blvd., less than a mile away.

CPS has repeatedly said that Herzl is considered a low-performing school and was on academic probation for several years. In the statement, the schools system said Herzl has space for Frazier Prep in its two buildings.

Under the plan, Frazier IB, a "National Blue Ribbon" school, would initially expand by 250 students and eventually grow to as many as 930 students, according to CPS.

About this time a year ago, CPS was talking about closing schools and announced a five-year moratorium on school closings (that is, after the closing of an historic 50 schools), though CPS last month released guidelines for possible "school actions."

The state deadline to announce closures and other school actions is Dec. 1. 

The school system also said it wants to move Bronzeville's all-boys charter school Urban Prep, which shares space with Drake Elementary at 2710 S. Dearborn St., into the Doolittle West building, now used by Chicago High School for the Arts, at 521 E. 35th St.

The arts school will be moving out of the building, Byrd-Bennett said, and CPS is "working to finalize a permanent solution for them."

Drake was a "welcoming school" this year after moving into the old Williams Elementary school building, sharing it with Urban Prep. CPS said this proposed move is part of a "larger strategy" to add more education options in Bronzeville.

CPS said it will have community meeting and public hearings about the plans starting in January, and then Byrd-Bennett will either recommend the proposals to the Board of Education or withdraw them.

Details about where and when these meetings will take place are available via the full statement from CPS.