Urban Prep parents want more security

September 23, 2011 9:47:55 AM PDT
Parents are upset over what they say is physical harassment of students at Chicago's Urban Prep Academy's west campus.

Parents voiced their concerns at a meeting Thursday night, saying students are being attacked by teenagers from a nearby Chicago Housing Authority complex.

The meeting -- originally scheduled as a celebration of the new school year -- instead became a strategy session for keeping Urban Prep's West students safe. A police representative told parents they are investigating the reported attacks and working on a solution.

Some parents say the attacks have turned violent and welcome the help of police.

"The first day, they attacked our children in front of the park," said Felicia Hampton, parent of student. "The second day, we took another route that was supposed to be our safety route, and they chased the boys through that route."

Some of the reported attacks have involved robbery and weapons. Some parents wonder if Urban Prep's outstanding academic reputation is making its students a target of teens from CHA projects that surround the school.

"These are like lambs surrounded by wolves... and that shouldn't be," said Denise Banks, grandparent.

Victoria Hildreth says her son wound up with stitches and a concussion after an altercation earlier this week. She's part of a group that filed a complaint with Chicago police.

"I saw that his, you know, his jaw was messed up, and what we did is, we rushed him to the emergency room," said Hildreth.

"These are the leaders of tomorrow, and without protecting the leaders of tomorrow, what's going to happen?" said Kevin Kee.


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