CPS approves funds to improve Austin science labs

July 29, 2018
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Two Austin high schools will receive improvements to their science labs along with 26 other Chicago high schools as part of a three-year investment plan included in the Chicago Public School’s $989 million capital budget that was approved last week.

The Austin College and Career Academy will get an entirely new lab, while Michele Clark Magnet High School will see improvements to its existing lab, according to a recent press release. Renovations for the 28 schools are scheduled to begin in spring 2019 and be completed by the beginning of the 2019-2020 school year.

The investment is being made to help CPS better align with the Next Generation Science Standards, a multi-state effort to improve science programs, and to provide resources students can engage and learn from.

The first year investment, totaling $28 million, will be followed by another two years of renovations during which $47 million will be invested. By the end of the $75 million, three-year investment, a total of 82 schools will have received either new or updated labs.

“For our students to succeed tomorrow, they need access to the best tools and technologies today,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement. “By equipping every CPS high school with a modern, state-of-the-art science lab we are helping to prepare every student in Chicago for a lifetime journey of discovery and inquiry.”

Schools that will be renovated in the first year were selected based on facility needs and program alignment. Schools serving minority and low-income students also received priority.

“The future is now, and this investment will ensure that every student in every neighborhood has state-of-the-art science equipment to prepare them for rigorous college coursework and the jobs of the future,” CPS CEO Janice K. Jackson said in a statement.

“Every student in Chicago deserves to attend a school with high quality resources, and in the first year of this multi-year investment we are prioritizing schools with the most significant facility needs and those that serve minority and low-income students to ensure all of our students have an opportunity to reach their full potential.”

The FY2019 capital budget is funded by proceeds from remaining prior year bond issuances backed by the Capital Improvement Tax (CIT) and state revenues, upcoming bond issuances and outside resources when available.

These 28 high schools will receive a new or renovated science lab by the 2019-2020 school year:

  1. Austin CCA High School (new lab)
  2. Bogan High School (renovations)
  3. Bowen High School (renovations)
  4. Bronzeville High School (renovations)
  5. Chicago Agriculture High School (renovations)
  6. Clark High School (renovations)
  7. Corliss High School (renovations)
  8. Crane Medical High School (renovations)
  9. Curie High School (new lab)
  10. Dyett Arts High School (new lab)
  11. Harlan High School (renovations)
  12. Hubbard High School (new lab)
  13. Hyde Park High School (renovations)
  14. Juarez High School (new lab)
  15. Julian High School (renovations)
  16. Kelly High School (renovations)
  17. Kennedy High School (new lab)
  18. Marshall High School (renovations)
  19. Mather High School (renovations)
  20. Phillips High School (renovations)
  21. Prosser High School (new lab)
  22. Raby High School (renovations)
  23. Simeon High School (new lab)
  24. Steinmetz High School (renovations)
  25. Sullivan High School (renovations)
  26. Tilden High School (renovations)
  27. Washington High School (new lab)
  28. Williams High School (new lab)

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