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CPS Announces Virtual Capital Budget Community Meetings to Further Promote Engagement and Equity

14 May 2020

First-Ever Capital Community Meeting Series Seeks to Engage Families and Gather Feedback on Capital Priorities; Five Community Meetings Will be Held, Including a Citywide Meeting Entirely in Spanish

CPS Office of Communications

Phone: 773-553-1620
Twitter: @chipubschools
Facebook: chicagopublicschools

Thursday, May 14, 2020

CHICAGO- Building on the district’s commitment to community engagement and equity during the budgeting process, Chicago Public Schools (CPS) today announced that it will hold five virtual meetings to engage communities across Chicago on capital priorities as the district works to develop its FY21 Capital Plan, which will be released this summer. The meetings — which will be hosted by the CPS Capital Department, Office of Equity, and Office of Family and Community Engagement (FACE) — are intended to provide communities with an understanding of the district’s capital planning process and collect public input to help the district prioritize critical capital needs.

“Community engagement is a critical component of our budgeting process and we look forward to gathering feedback on capital priorities ahead of the budget release later this summer,” said CPS CEO Dr. Janice K. Jackson. “Every student in every neighborhood deserves access to an educational facility that meets their needs, and we look forward to hearing more from communities about their capital priorities.”  
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the district had planned to hold capital meetings in communities across Chicago, and will now hold these meetings virtually via Zoom using a format that will allow community members to ask questions and provide feedback to the district. This is the first year the district is holding community meetings to discuss capital priorities prior to the capital budget release. After the district’s budget proposal is developed and released, CPS will also hold public hearings to discuss the FY21 Capital Plan. 

Four of the meetings will correspond to geographic areas and one citywide meeting will be held entirely in Spanish to create an improved community engagement experience for Spanish-speaking families. For families unable to make the meetings, the presentation materials will be available at in Spanish, Chinese (Simplified), Polish, Urdu and Arabic, and video recordings will be posted to

“CPS families play a critical role in helping the district evaluate how best to equitably meet the needs of school communities across the district,” said CPS Chief Equity Officer Dr. Maurice Swinney. “We hope to empower communities by providing more opportunities for families to learn about our budgeting process and provide feedback to inform future investments.”

The capital meetings are part of a larger multi-year commitment from Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot and CPS leadership to strengthen the school budgeting process by engaging communities on key budget processes and decisions. In April, following an extensive community engagement effort, the district released FY21 school budgets, which included more than $125 million in additional funding for schools. The district’s full FY21 budget – including the FY21 Capital Plan — will be released later this summer.

Information on Virtual Capital Meetings:
Five capital meetings will be held during the last week of May; participants are encouraged to RSVP in advance using the links below:
South (Networks 11, 12 ,13, 17)
Tuesday, May 26, 2020 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM CDT

Southwest (Networks 7, 8, 9, 10, 16):
Tuesday, May 26, 2020 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM CDT

Central/West (Networks 3, 5, 6, 7, 15)
Thursday, May 28, 2020 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM CDT

North/Northwest Meeting (Networks 1, 2, 4, 14)
Thursday, May 28, 2020 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM CDT

City-wide Spanish-Language Meeting
Friday, May 29, 2020 3:00 PM – 4:30 PM CDT

Chicago Public Schools serves 355,000 students in 642 schools. It is the nation’s third-largest school district.