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Chicago Math and Science Academy Charter Expansion Faces Hearing Monday

 The Chicago Math and Science Academy
The Chicago Math and Science Academy
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DNAinfo/Benjamin Woodard

ROGERS PARK — The Chicago Math and Science Academy charter school will face a public hearing Monday over its plans to offer more high school classes.

The school, 7212 N. Clark St., seeks approval from the Chicago Board of Education to enroll 100 more students over the next four years, gradually phasing in students to each high-school grade level.

The hearing, 5-6:30 p.m. at Chicago Public School's headquarters, 125 S. Clark St., would also cover Andersonville's Passages Charter School's plan to add another 50 students.

Ben Woodard explains why the Rogers Park academy is looking to take on more students, and why some neighbors might not like the plan:

An initial public meeting on the academy's plan was held in February near the school.

Academy spokeswoman Irene Bermudez said she'd expected school board to vote on the expansion in May, but it was delayed for unknown reasons.

The school's enrollment has been capped at 600 students since 2004. School officials had said 500 students applied for just 100 open spots — awarded by lottery — for the 2014-15 school year. Students who applied but were not chosen are placed on a waiting list.

The academy is part of Concept Schools. The Des Plaines-based charter management company is under federal investigation for allegations of white-collar crimes, according to officials.

Conducted by the FBI, Department of Education and Federal Communication Commission, the inquiry ensnared 19 of the company's schools in Illinois, Indiana and Ohio — including the academy, where FBI agents searched school files last month.

Officials, though, would not disclose the nature of the investigation or say which schools have been targeted.