Jun 102024
 

Bronzeville Academy Charter School Matters!

Black children deserve a quality education. It is a right. And yet, within the past few weeks, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) made the decision not to renew the charter of Bronzeville Academy Charter School (BACS), thus closing down the school as of June 30, 2024.

This non-renewal was done, after an initial conditional renewal in February, and despite the fact that BACS had addressed the ISBE’s issue of it not having secured a facility to house the school – BACS entered into a formal agreement to use PUSH classrooms for the school, which is working to the staff’s, parents’ and students’ satisfaction.

COAL hosted members of BACS leadership at its June 8th Power Breakfast towards understanding what reason(s) the ISBE would have to shut down a Black-managed institution of learning that is successfully educating Black children; what reason the ISBE might have to disrupt the learning environment of Black children; what excuse the ISBE could provide Black parents who support BACS’ performance in educating their children.

CEO Alvin Boutte Jr., CFO David E. Ireland, and Assistant Principal Vince Payne did a compelling job of providing detail on this issue, providing information on the school’s performance (it educates grades K – 8), including its financial position, and in responding to tough questioning during Q&A.

The bottom line: There was no credible reason for ISBE to shut down Bronzeville Academy Charter School (BACS). Period.

We, as a community, cannot sit by and silently accept ISBE shutting down Bronzeville Academy.

We, as a community, must challenge the systems that do not prioritize the education of our children, that devalue our community institutions, and that do not listen to the voices of our community. Voices who strongly support Bronzeville Academy providing our children with a chance to succeed.

Black youth matter. Black institutions matter. Black voices matter.

Bronzeville Academy matters.

Please take part in this critical call-to-action.

Respectfully,

COAL Board of Directors

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“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.

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