Once a school

August 22, 2013

With summer waning, photographer Bill Healy took to the streets to document the dozens of buildings that last year housed Chicago elementary schools, and now are shuttered. In May, the Chicago Board of Education voted to close 50 schools, the largest single round of school closings in recent American history. Healy set out to document the conditions in and around the closed school buildings. He captured ghostly images of empty playgrounds and abandoned classrooms that serve as a testament to a changing city. On Monday, children from these closed schools will start the year at their new schools. The fate of these buildings remains uncertain, but the memories linger. Here are some of Healy's favorite images.


Bill Healy is a photographer and producer at WBEZ. Follow him @chicagoan.