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A Quarter Of Chicago Public Schools Failed Recent Cleanliness Inspections

A quarter of Chicago public schools failed a new round of cleanliness inspections.

On the wake of the Fourth of July holiday, Chicago Public Schools released a report listing the school buildings that passed recent so-called blitz inspections and those that failed.

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CPS Board of Education photo from Jan. 26, 2017.

Andrew Gill

Updated July 4 at 10:30 A.M.

A quarter of Chicago public schools failed a new round of cleanliness inspections.

On the wake of the Fourth of July holiday, Chicago Public Schools released a report listing the school buildings that passed recent so-called blitz inspections and those that failed.

Emily Bolton, a district press secretary, said in a statement that CPS is carrying out a multipronged plan to better support schools next year.

“We are committed to working with school communities throughout the city to ensure all students have access to a high-quality learning environment,” the statement said.

The new scrutiny comes after a recent Chicago Sun-Times investigation found that 91 of 125 schools failed earlier inspections. According to the Sun-Times, some schools had rats and rodent droppings; others had pest infestations and filthy bathrooms.

In response to those reports, CPS came up with a new facilities management plan. It includes adding 200 new custodians this summer, with half of them remaining with the school district at the start of the school year. The district is also putting a team in charge of ensuring that schools are kept clean by conducting monthly facility inspections in all its buildings.

The inspection report listed 100 schools that will require re-inspection.

The Chicago Teachers Union responded to the inspection report with a statement that slammed the school district and the Emanuel administration for increasing privatization of school services. The union said it joins parents and community groups in demanding the return to an elected school board for the district.

A bit of history: In 1995, in response to financial and other scandals roiling the school district, Illinois lawmakers gave the mayor of Chicago the power to appoint school board members.

This story has been updated with comment from the Chicago Teachers Union.

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