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Occupy Piccolo! Chicago Communities Occupy School In Protest of Privatization

Posted 11 years ago on Feb. 18, 2012, 5:39 a.m. EST by OccupyWallSt

The Brian Piccolo Specialty School in Humboldt Park, Chicago is currently Occupied by parents, teachers, and students. Occupy Chicago and other allies are outside the building in solidarity and have set up an encampment. Around one hundred people are present and are taking shifts to ensure the safety of the occupation. The Chicago Teachers Union has expressed support for the action. Piccolo, an elementary school with a student body that is almost entirely from low income communities of color, is one of 16 Chicago public schools slated to be closed by Mayor Rahm's service cuts to the poor.

Updates, 2/18

  • 3:30AM Central Time: It is believed that Chicago Police have decided to leave and protesters have declared victory for Day 1 of Occupied Piccolo! If you are in Chicago, please come to 1040 North Keeler Avenue to show your support, and bring a tent! Follow #takebackourschools, #piccolo, @OccupyChicago and @TBOurSchoolsChi on Twitter.
  • 10:30AM: The police are still not attempting to remove protesters inside. However, they will not allow anyone else inside, and will not allow occupiers to leave and return. Parents and occupiers inside are being denied food and medicine.
  • 1:45PM: Chicago police have arrived on the scene. Around a dozen people remain inside the school, with a large crowd rallying outside. The occupiers have been holding the school since 5PM yesterday and are still being denied food and medicine by the police. Interviews to press are being given through windows. A busload of teachers have shown up to show solidarity.
  • 4:00PM: Occupiers have emerged from the school to thunderous applause and declared victory! The demands have been met, proving that direct action and community power can be leveraged for real change! Parents will be given the opportunity to meet with the Board of Directors to submit a counter-proposal for local education. This is what real community control looks like.


Via Occupy Chicago Press:

Declaration #1 from Piccolo Occupation
11:49pm - February 17th, 2012