Chicago establishes ‘book sanctuaries’ as book ban increases – Chicago Tribune


Good morning Chicago.

The days of Chicago reporters and news photographers who depended on a sizzling police scanner to track news reports and let the public know what officers were doing in real time are quickly ending.

The Chicago Police Department is transitioning all of its radios to digitally encrypted channels by the end of this year, limiting access to one of the few ways the public can best monitor police activity. Journalists have a long history of listening to police radio traffic to know when there is news and to get to the scene of a developing event.

Adam Scott Wandt, assistant professor and vice chair of technology in the Department of Public Management at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, said the change means the end of citizens across the country having full access to police activities while they work.

“Then there’s a whole other class, and that’s the class of reporters in the media, and I’m a strong believer in government transparency and accountability,” Wandt said. “And it certainly worries me, worries me significantly. If the police exclude the media from live radio broadcasts, I think it certainly reduces the level of accountability faced by police departments.”

Read more about this story by Paige Fry.

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A glass shelf containing some of the country’s most notable challenged books adorns the entrance of the Chicago Public Library‘s Lincoln Belmont branch. The books are surrounded by yellow tape and red signs that inevitably draw the attention of those who walk inside to the titles that have been banned or attempted to be banned in other libraries across the country.

But instead of taking the books off the shelves, in celebration of Banned Book Week 2022, visitors to the library were invited to learn about each and every one of them and stimulate discussion on the subjects for which they were banned. The City Lit Theater Company joined the effort by presenting a theatrical screening of iconic banned and contested books so people could make their own decisions about whether to read them.

Chicago Public School leaders and elected officials gathered seven months ago to celebrate the renaming of a Lakeview elementary school in honor of abolitionist Harriet Tubman. The change was heralded as a model of what a school could achieve when united.

Now, just weeks into the new school year, the community at Tubman Elementary appears to be divided. Enrollment has fallen by around 100 compared to the previous year. Meanwhile, Tubman’s principal is under fire for her handling of student safety complaints. About three months ago, Tubman’s local school board asked CPS CEO Pedro Martinez to start a termination case against principal Kimberly Gibson – but there was no resolution as various CPS investigations were pending.

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Nestled in a leafy and affluent part of suburban DuPage County, Center Cass School District 66 in Downers Grove appears at first glance to be an example of the best in public education.

The district has three neat and modern school buildings, enthusiastic teachers known for their academic rigor, and plenty of personal attention for its 1,100 students from kindergarten through eighth grade.

But the district’s dire financial problems have pushed this decline into drastic budget cuts, including reducing the number of teachers and building managers, eliminating all after-school programs and athletics, cutting bus routes, and shortening the school day.

Khalil Herbert stood at his Soldier Field locker about half an hour after the Chicago Bears’ 23-20 win over the Houston Texans and gave a one-word answer about how he was feeling.

“Sore,” he said with a smile.

But sore in the best way, writes Colleen Kane.

Nick Kindelsperger writes that when black Americans immigrated from the southern United States, they brought their grilling skills but also had to adapt to cooking in a large and often cold city. With no room for traditional grills, they quickly switched to the distinctive aquarium smokers that could be housed indoors. With Chicago’s enormous meatpacking industry nearby, a number of entrepreneurs learned how to turn one of the cheapest cuts, rib tips, into a true delicacy.


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