Some Lathrop Kids Get a Bus, But Not All

by Mary C. Piemonte 

Students from CHA's Lathrop Homes who transferred to Fredrick Jahn Elementary School now have a bus to help them trek the long distance there. Photo by Mary C. Piemonte

Students from the Lathrop Homes Chicago public housing complex now attending an elementary school some 10 blocks away recently got a bus their parents were fighting for – but some of their neighbors are still forced to walk.

The bus started taking kindergarten to eighth grade students from Lathrop to Jahn Elementary School a few weeks ago. The students started going to Jahn School after Schneider Elementary School, located inside the Lathrop development, closed this past June. Parents claimed Schneider closed due to a decrease in enrollment, which was caused by the Chicago Housing Authority’s relocation of families from Lathrop.

However, while the former Schneider students at Jahn School have a bus, the former Schneider students now attending Prescott Elementary School, also about 10 blocks away, have not been provided any transportation services. Most continue to walk that long distance to get their education, according to Lathrop residents.

Last month, Jadine Chou, vice president of CHA’s Asset Management Department, told Residents’ Journal the agency was working with Chicago Public Schools officials to rectify the problem. On Oct. 18, Chou told RJ after the CHA Board of Commissioners meeting that they were able to work out transportation for students attending Jahn Elementary School, but would have to talk to the Chicago Public Schools officials to find out about transportation for the Lathrop kids who were transferred to Prescott.

“CPS makes the determination on the transportation services for their students. CHA advises and makes recommendations,” Chou explained. “In the case of Lathrop Homes we did make a request that CPS look at the situation, and they did do that…But I can tell you that it is our desire to try and do everything we can to assist our residents.”

Read RJ’s previous coverage of the efforts of Lathrop Homes residents to get transportation for their children here: http://wethepeoplemedia.org/uncategorized/elementary-school-students-suffer-from-cha-relocations/

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