Critical House vote coming up on HB 363 (school closings bill)

From Don Moore at Designs for Change:

Representative Cynthia Soto's House Bill 363 will be voted on by the Illinois House Elementary and Secondary Education Committee next Thursday, February 19, at 8 a.m., in Springfield.

The House Committee Members must get hundreds of calls telling them to support House Bill 363. Here is a list of the Committee Members, along with their local office and  Springfield phone numbers. Call them in in their home offices on Tuesday and their Springfield offices on Wednesday.

House Bill 363 places a one-year moratorium on all Chicago school closings,  consolidations, phase-outs, and turnarounds. This would allow time for the State Legislature, with local input, to develop a fair set of rules for making these decisions in Chicago, plus decisions about new school construction and school repairs.

The Chicago Board of Education and Mayor are putting tremendous pressure on Committee members to stop the bill. They want decisions about school buildings to continue as an arbitrary political process.

Here are a few key points you might make when you contact Committee members (in English and Spanish). Be firm, but be polite. Ask for their support.

This is a critical time for our voices to be heard!

Since the Committee will meet at 8 a.m. next Thursday morning, we need some people to lobby the Committee members on Wednesday in Springfield.  Email donmoore@designsforchange.org if you might be able to go to Springfield early on Wednesday and talk to legislators all day. You could then come back Wednesday night.

House members are most strongly influenced by their constituents and by regular parents, educators, and community members.


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Julie Woestehoff is PURE's executive director. Julie's work has earned her a Ford Foundation award and recognition as one of the 100 Most Powerful Women in Chicago.