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State: Chicago special education overhaul violated law

May 12, 2018

CHICAGO (AP) — The Illinois State Board of Education may appoint an independent monitor to oversee special education at Chicago Public Schools after concluding a 2016 overhaul violated federal law.

The board is scheduled to vote Wednesday on whether to appoint the monitor for at least three years.

The state launched its probe last year after appeals from parents and educators. A WBEZ radio investigation also found the district’s changes saved the financially struggling district money but resulted in big cuts to student services.

Chicago Public Schools CEO Janice Jackson said in a statement Friday that improving special education is one of her highest priorities.

She said she believes some changes were made too quickly and without enough parent and educator input. Jackson says “Chicago Public Schools will not make that mistake again.”

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