Dear Clemente Parents, Guardians, and Families:
As parents and educators, we have the same goals for our students: to get a quality education, in a safe and comfortable school, with dedicated, inspiring, and caring teachers.
Our school strives towards reaching those goals every day – and even in the face of significant challenges, we’ve made great progress towards them. In fact, in just the last year, Roberto Clemente Community Academy has become an accredited International Baccalaureate World School, which is something that many people did not believe could happen here – at Clemente! But we did it! We, with your help, will continue helping students continue to reach their fullest and brightest potential. I’m writing you today, because this progress is now in jeopardy.
Our school district, Chicago Public Schools (CPS), is facing a $480 million dollar budget shortfall that will have consequences on our staff and class size beginning next year if no action is taken.
We need your help – this problem can’t be solved without you.
Our elected leaders in Springfield are the ones who will decide whether or not funding will come through. For years, Springfield has cut education funding – asking you as a taxpayer to do more and giving your kids less. Now they must decide if they’ll provide CPS with needed relief in the form of $200 million in pension costs and increased education funding across the state — or whether they’ll continue to treat Chicago’s students unfairly.
As parents and educators, we cannot fully focus on the needs of our students with continued financial instability that upends our schools. It’s time we let Governor Rauner and our elected representatives know that this era of one-off budget tricks is over, and that we need them to treat Chicago students fairly, by funding Chicago schools and teacher pensions as they do for the rest of the state.
Your voice – as a taxpayer, a voter, and a parent – is so critical for our leaders to hear.
Please take a minute to visit cps.edu/takeaction, where you’ll find resources to help you speak up for our community. And if you’d like to get more involved, please reach out to me. I’m confident we can solve this if we work together to let Springfield know that shared values around education means shared responsibility – and it’s time they step up.
Thank you very much for your continued trust and support as we work together to educate our amazing students!
Roberto Clemente Community Academy