Jun 252023

Great news on Urban Prep front

There is very good news on the Fight to Save Urban Prep front:

On Friday, June 23, 2023, the Illinois Appellate Court granted Urban Prep’s motion for a Temporary Restraining Order preventing CPS from taking its illegal action to close Urban Prep’s schools.

The court further ordered that “the October 26, 2022 decision of the CPS Board of Education non-renewing and effectively closing the Urban Prep Academies’ charter schools be stayed” until the matter can be fully adjudicated. (See Appellate Court order here).

The court’s decision means that Urban Prep’s Englewood and Bronzeville Campuses will remain open, for now…

The fight continues. 

COAL’s position is clear: Black children deserve a quality education. It is a right. Further, Black children deserve the community standing up to protect their right, therefor the fight continues. Our call on the Governor and the Mayor to save Urban Prep continues.

This effort is straightforward: Black children deserve a quality education and Urban Prep is providing our boys and young men with a quality education, therefor Urban Prep should not be closed.


COAL Board of Directors

“The time to work seriously and collectively, to improve the state of our Community, is upon us…”

Let Us be intentional in all aspects of the Work that must be done.

Speak Up Elected Representatives
COAL has called upon our elected representatives to speak up and to speak out on the issue of Urban Prep and the education of our boys and young men.

Whether they support saving Urban Prep or take issue with it, the education of Black youth is too important to remain silent. COAL has directly contacted each elected official whose district covers either or both of the Bronzeville and Englewood campuses, requesting that the community hear from them, and stating that “their silence has been deafening…”. We are awaiting responses and will let our membership and readership know who responds.

Importantly, this request extends to all of our elected representatives who should care about Black youth receiving a quality education.

Although we’ve had to search to find statements on this matter, COAL appreciates comments in support of saving Urban Prep, from State Senator Mattie Hunter, provided as oral testimony at the April 19th Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) meeting.

State Senator Mattie Hunter spoke on Urban Prep Academies, noting that the Englewood and Bronzeville campuses are in her district. She spoke on the high achievements of students from the schools and their importance to communities. She advocated for the continued operation of the schools, despite the issues they faced. She discussed the importance of districts and schools reaching out to their elected officials for assistance in navigating issues and her willingness to collaborate with stakeholders on a solution. Illinois State Board of Education met April 19 | Peoria Standard

In the following, Senator Hunter relays that she, State Rep Sonya Harper and former State Rep Lamont Robinson, met to discuss this matter and agreed that Urban Prep should remain open.

CPS to take over 2 Urban Prep campuses

COAL, which has demonstrated strong advocacy for Urban Prep, would also stress the importance of elected officials reaching out to community organizations and individuals towards leveraging additional sources of experience and expertise for assistance in navigating major issues and to collaborate with on solutions. We all must work together, intentionally, in helping our community.

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