High HOPES Passes Resolution to Reduce Suspensions and Implement Restorative Justice in Chicago Public Schools
High HOPES Coalition Passes a Non-Binding Resolution to Reduce Suspensions and Expulsions by Implementing RJ programs out of the City Council Education Committee
The High HOPES Campaign, a Chicago coalition of eight community groups that includes DSC members Access Living, Blocks Together, POWER-PAC/COFI and Southwest Youth Collaborative, won the passage of a non-binding resolution in the Chicago City Council in May after members of the Education Committee grilled Chicago Public Schools (CPS) about their failure to implement district-wide alternative discipline approaches.
The resolution asks CPS to reduce suspensions, expulsions and arrests by 40% by fully implementing and funding restorative justice. The coalition followed that victory with a public meeting of nearly 200 leaders on June 2. There, students of color, youth with disabilities, parents, teachers, community and faith leaders were joined by aldermen and the Chicago Teachers Union in calling on Mayor Rahm Emanuel and CPS to negotiate in good faith.
The public meeting was followed by a demonstration outside the house of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who has control over CPS and has ignored the issue despite efforts by the campaign over the course of a year to start dialogue on this issue. The action included street theater, which contrasted all the lip service by CPS in favor of Restorative Justice with the Mayors actual spending on zero tolerance in schools. The district spends 12 times more on zero tolerance than on restorative justice.
Learn more about the High HOPES Campaign.