Lane academic center a GO!

March 23, 2011

Lane Tech will open an academic center for middle schoolers starting in fall, 2011. Credit: Patrick Boylan

Lane Tech's "new" academic center rode a long bumpy road, in stop and go traffic, lights changing from red to green to yellow, then pulling up just short of the stop sign. If CPS needed a clear signal of community support, last week's open house sparked a passionate outburst. Principal Antoinette LoBosco felt the good vibes hours before the vote. "I am VERY optimistic we will move forward.  Our community meeting  was described as a 'Lane lovefest' by the Decatur LSC chair," she said. "As you know, many parents and members of the Lane community spoke in favor of a LTAC and of offering the test to those that missed it." LoBosco said. "It was especially gratifying to hear our students speak about what the school has meant to them." Indeed, a steady stream of current and former students, educators , teachers, and even school leaders from other neighborhoods marched to the open microphone. One parent spoke for many, apologizing for being emotional, "all my children worked so hard to do so well... now how do they get a chance?" Until now, Taft was the only option on the North Side. Located on the far Northwest Side, 41 middle school students from Taft transferred to Lane in 2010. Lobosco observed, "many of the 8th graders from the Taft Center end up attending Lane or other selective enrollment high schools." Thousands of academically excellent North Side middle-schoolers now have a homier option for a one-stop learning and earning shop for high school credits which lets them continue their education at  the respected selective enrollment high school. The academic center, planned to open at Lane next fall, also helps Chicago Public Schools consolidate school building space and bridge the budget chasm. Applications are being filled out to meet the April 1st deadline, and a community open house is slated for March 27.

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