Congressman Bobby Rush

Representing the 1st District of Illinois

U.S. Rep. Rush Bobby L. Rush And Illinois Delegation Deliver $2 Million In New Federal Appropriations To Chicago Public Schools For 2005

Jan 21, 2005
Press Release

Chicago, IL. ----  (January 21, 2005) Congressman Bobby L.Rush and the Illinois Delegation announced today that they have secured more than $2 million in additional federal funding for Chicago Public Schools (CPS).  The allocated funds will be used to help the school district move forward on each of its three core strategies in the 2005-2006 school year.  Rep. Rush, CPS officials and other Illinois congressmen made the announcement at  Jahn Elementary School, 3149 N. Wolcott Ave.

Funds are earmarked for a variety of CPS projects, including the child-parent centers, after-school programs, the Reading Initiative, programs for at-risk youth, a teacher training initiative and a campus improvement project.

U.S. Reps. Bobby L. Rush, Rahm Emanuel, Jesse Jackson Jr. and Jan Schakowsky attended the news conference. U.S. Reps. Danny Davis, Luis Gutierrez, and House Speaker Dennis Hastert also were instrumental in securing funding.

We're here today to celebrate more than two million dollars of funding that the federal government has awarded Chicago Public Schools this year - recognition of the quality of the programs for students and families at CPS, Emanuel said. Securing this funding was the result of a group effort, and I appreciate everything that the entire Illinois delegation has done to make these important earmarks a reality.

Committed to ensuring that students excel both in school and in life, Rush fought hard for an appropriation that enhances CPS career academies project.

Im a firm believer that in order for children to ultimately excel in the boardroom, critical educational and professional development must begin in the classroom, Rush said. I will continue to work with Chicago Public Schools on their Education-to-Careers program, because it is a future forward advancement designed to prepare our students for a competitive marketplace. 

After-school programs have long been a priority for Jackson.

Studies have shown that students who spend extended amounts of time alone after school are more likely to experience problems ranging from poor school performance or low self-esteem, to increased chances of becoming involved with drugs and violence, Jackson said. That's why, as a member of the House Appropriations Committee, I felt that it was important to keep my long-standing commitment to securing funds for the Chicago Public Schools after-school programs.

Schakowsky said that an appropriation for CPS Child-Parent-Centers program was her top priority.

It is critical to invest in innovative programs like CPS's Child-Parent Center, she said. Involving parents more intimately in their young children's education is a sure way to help our children excel in the future. I will continue to work with the Chicago Public Schools to ensure that our children's educational needs are met in and out of the classroom.

The new funding for next year is in addition to a $2.1 million U.S. Department of Defense grant, secured by U.S. Sen. Richard Durbin to operate a new Naval Academy in an existing Chicago high school.

Were fortunate here in Chicago to have legislators who understand the vital role education plays in our society, and who have done their best to support it in every possible way, Chicago Board of Education President Michael Scott said.

CPS Chief Executive Officer Arne Duncan said the financial support was sorely needed in this time of budget constraints.

I want to personally thank all of our congressional delegates for securing this desperately needed funding for our schools, Duncan said. These grants will help us boost our literacy efforts, improve the training and recruitment of our teachers and administrators, and create more learning opportunities for our students, which all target our core strategies.

Among 05 appropriations for CPS from the U.S. Department of Education are:

  • $600,000 for the Child-Parent Centers program, obtained by Schakowsky and Gutierrez. The initiative will target children and parents in need of before- and after-school activities.
  • $800,000 for the Chicago Academy/Academy of Urban School Leadership, 3400 N. Austin, Blvd., acquired by Durbin and Emanuel. As one of the most innovative teacher training programs in the country, the Academy offers resident teachers a year-long teacher training program in combination with a masters degree in education. In return, residents commit to teaching in underserved Chicago schools for five additional years. The funding allowed the Academy to add a high school in addition to its elementary school program.
  • $340,000 for Education-to-Careers, from Rush and Hastert, to improve the quality of existing career academies by redesigning the schools schedules to allow for common planning time and professional development.
  • $225,000 for CPS After-School Programs, from Jackson.
  • Additional funds for the Chicago Reading Initiative from Davis.

These grants are one reflection of the ongoing commitment of our congressional delegation to finding the resources necessary to secure the highest quality education for our youth and express a recognition of the unique and irreplaceable role of public education in our democracy, Davis said.

Additionally, Rush secured $72,700 for the Chicago Board of Education to go toward construction and renovation of a Chicago high school.  Emanuel also obtained $300,000 in funding from the U.S. Department of Justice for programs focusing on at-risk youth within Chicago schools, and a $72,500 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development grant for Chicago Academys gym renovation project. 

The Chicago Public Schools is the nations third-largest school system. It includes more than 600 schools and serves about 431,000 students.