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Local School Councils

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Advocate. Train. Lead.

Chicago’s Local School Councils (LSC) are a product of the Chicago School Reform Act of 1988. The North River Commission (NRC) was one of the original community development firms to advocate on behalf of the creation of LSCs when the original legislation was announced in the Illinois State House over 20 years ago. As a result, NRC has followed up that initial advocacy work with a number of different efforts targeted in order to train neighborhood-elected school officials with the skills necessary in order to lead urban school districts.

According to the University of Chicago's Consortium on School Research, the city’s highest performing schools share five common characteristics, including: (1) strong instructional leadership, (2) a welcoming learning climate, (3) an ambitious curriculum of instruction, (4) a high-level of professional capacity for faculty and staff, and (5) a vibrant working relationship with family and community stakeholders.

So aligned with the North River Commission’s belief in comprehensive community development, NRC views LSCs as vital tools in transforming neighborhood schools into becoming the center of their communities - increasing the quality of life and strengthening the local economy in neighborhoods across the City of Chicago.

If you are interested in becoming a Local School Council Representative or would like the North River Commission to organize a training opportunity for your school, please contact Casey Baxley, NRC Education Coordinator, at: (773) 478-0202 ext. 111 or  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

The Next Local School Council Elections Take Place:
April 7, 2014 for Elementary Schools and April 8, 2014 for High Schools

Your neighborhood school needs you! Volunteer to serve on a Local School Council.

What is a Local School Council?

Chicago Public Schools have Local School Councils (LSC) which are responsible for three main duties:

  1. Approving how school funds and resources are allocated
  2. Developing and monitoring the annual School Improvement Plan
  3. Evaluating and selecting the school's principal

Local School Councils include the following members:

  • 6 parents
  • 2 community members
  • 2 teachers
  • 1 non-teacher staff
  • school's principal
  • student representative (high school LSCs only)

Who should run?

All parents and community members who want to strengthen their local schools and have a positive impact on student achievement are encouraged to run.

A parent is eligible to serve as a Parent Representative if he/she:

  • Is the parent or legal guardian of a child currently enrolled in that school.
  • Is not an employee of the Board.

A community member is eligible to serve as a Community Representative if he/she:

  • Resides in the attendance area or voting district of that school.
  • Is not the parent or legal guardian of a child currently enrolled at that school.
  • Is not an employee of the Board.
  • Is at least 18 years old.

For more eligibility information, see CPS's LSC Eligibilty page.

LSC elections will be held April 7th for elementary schools and April 8th for high schools. Once elected, representatives serve a 2-year term. Typically, LSC’s meet at least once a month.

Links to the Candidate Forms and other resources may be found on the LSC Elections page of CPS's website.

The forms must be filed in person in person at the school where you intend to run by 3:00 PM on March 14, 2014 (the deadline was extended from February 26, 2014).

The full LSC Election Timeline may be viewed here.  Please note that the candidacy filing deadline has been extended to March 14, 2014 at 3:00 PM.  

An overview of LSC’s may be found here. 


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Contact Information

North River Commission
3403 West Lawrence Ave, Suite 201
Chicago, IL 60625   Map

773.478.0202  Phone
773.478.0282  Fax