Breaking News Bar
updated: 8/28/2014 5:05 PM

Chicago schools getting $10 million for Safe Passage

Success - Article sent! close
  • Safety guard Renee Green watches as parents walk with their children along a Safe Passage route on the first day of school last year in Chicago.

      Safety guard Renee Green watches as parents walk with their children along a Safe Passage route on the first day of school last year in Chicago.
    Associated Press

Associated Press

A school safety program beefed up after dozens of Chicago schools were closed last year will get a $10 million infusion from the state of Illinois for further expansion, Gov. Pat Quinn announced Thursday.

Chicago Public Schools, the nation's third-largest district, started the Safe Passage program in 2009 after concerns rose about the safety of students traveling to and from schools in city neighborhoods. It was expanded last year after the district closed dozens of schools and parents and community groups feared for children's safety, including concerns about students having to cross gang lines to attend school.

Order Reprint Print Article
Interested in reusing this article?
Custom reprints are a powerful and strategic way to share your article with customers, employees and prospects.
The YGS Group provides digital and printed reprint services for Daily Herald. Complete the form to the right and a reprint consultant will contact you to discuss how you can reuse this article.
Need more information about reprints? Visit our Reprints Section for more details.

Contact information ( * required )

Success - request sent close

The program puts trained employees on school routes. The workers can alert police if there's a threat.

"As we kick off a new school year, all students should be focused on their studies -- not on their safety -- as they walk to and from school," Quinn said in a statement.

The money, from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, comes from proceeds through a state program issuing bonds for capital projects backed with state sales tax revenue.

The idea is to increase Safe Passage routes to the 93 schools already in the program and add 27 new schools, officials said. The additional money is expected to give 600 people jobs.

CPS officials have cited statistics showing that the program led to a 20 percent drop in overall criminal incidents around schools in the Safe Passage program. However, there have still been violent incidents near routes, including the December sexual assault of a 15-year-old girl who was heading to school.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel said that the program's workers play a "critical role" for children.

"Safe Passage is about more than just building a route to school; it is about building a route to college, career and beyond, so that once our kids get to school, they get the world-class education they deserve," he said in a statement.

Share this page
Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.