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Report recommends uses for closed Chicago schools

Published: Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014 11:13 p.m. CST

CHICAGO – A committee is recommending Chicago immediately reuse two of several dozen shuttered public schools.

The Advisory Committee for School Repurposing was established after the Chicago Public Schools in 2013 closed about 50 schools, saying they were underused or underperforming.

The panel issued a report Friday recommending Lafayette Elementary become the Chicago High School for the Arts, and the former King Elementary be used to consolidate functions of the city’s Fleet and Facility Management Department.

The report said the remaining schools will be evaluated for potential reuse and redevelopment, and most will be offered for sale via a public bidding process with the goal of spurring neighborhood economic development.

Those that aren’t reused or sold likely will be demolished.

Committee members said the public should have input in the process.

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