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Apr 07,2008
Former player bids for Chicago school
by UPI

CHICAGO -- A not-for-profit education company headed by a former member of the Phoenix Suns basketball team says it is interested in taking over a failed Chicago school.

Kevin Johnson's St. HOPE education group was expected to be among the fifth round of applicants Monday seeking to create new schools under the Chicago's Renaissance 2010 initiative, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Johnson turned an after-school program he started at Sacramento High in California into a not-for-profit company that took over the high school, created a preschool and elementary school and helped establish 14 businesses in an impoverished section of Sacramento.

The Johnson model aims not just to create new schools but to revitalize the neighborhoods around them.

"We are leaning towards a high school on the West Side," St. HOPE spokesman Dana Gonzalez told the Sun-Times.

Rather than start a new school, Gonzalez said the firm favors turning around a struggling one as it did in California.

Copyright © 2008, by United Press International. All Rights Reserved.

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