As fewer kids enroll, big cities face a small schools crisis
On a recent morning inside Chalmers School of Excellence on Chicago’s West Side, five preschool and kindergarten students finished up drawings. Four staffers, including a teacher and a tutor, chatted with them about colors and shapes.
The summer program offers the kind of one-on-one support parents love. But behind the scenes, Principal Romian Crockett worries the school is becoming precariously small.
Chalmers lost almost a third of its enrollment during the pandemic, shrinking to 215 students. In Chicago, COVID-19 worsened declines that preceded the virus: Predominantly Black neighborhoods like Chalmers’...