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Charter Schools Feel Budget Heat

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Schools across the city and state are grappling with the prospect of major budget cuts. Some Chicago charter schools warn they may have to close altogether.

Chicago has made the creation of new charter schools a central part of its reform strategy.

But faced with a budget deficit that could hit a billion dollars,school officials have told charters they should brace for an 18 percent cut in funding next year.

Sylvia Ewing of the Illinois Network of Charter Schools says many couldn’t survive that cut.

EWING : All of the small schools that we’ve spoken to so far would close.

Ewing agrees charters should make sacrifices, but wants the district to avoid cuts that would kill the schools.

EWING: Due to the nature of charter schools not having a lot of bureaucracy, you’re cutting close to the bone.

Schools chief Ron Huberman is scheduled to meet with principals and charter leaders on the budget today.

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