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Senn High Principal Removed Pending Investgation

Lofton

Photo: Senn FB Page

Edgewater’s Senn High School principal, Susan Lofton, has been removed from her position pending a Chicago Public Schools investigation. Lofton was told the news last Friday but the public announcement from the school’s inspector general wasn’t given until yesterday. Dismissal charges are being reviewed by CPS interim CEO Jesse Ruiz.

In a Chicago Sun-Times article, sources said Lofton is accused of lowering admission test scores from special education students in order to keep them from attending Senn High School’s Fine and Performing Arts Magnet Program.

“CPS has high standards for its school leaders and the district takes any allegation of impropriety very seriously,” district spokesman Bill McCaffrey said. “Our focus is on ensuring these schools have a strong leadership team in place to effectively support the schools, students and staff.”

Since Lofton has taken over leadership at Senn, the school has improved greatly. The school is celebrated for its strong arts program and diverse student population. Mayor Rahm Emanuel had selected Senn in 2012 as his first International Baccalaureate program, offering the curriculum to all its students before admitting just a fraction of them into the rigorous Diploma Programme for juniors and seniors.

“We Bulldogs can use this as an opportunity to celebrate and build upon many of the improvements made over the past five years,” a letter from the Local School Council posted on the school’s website said regarding CPS’ search for an interim principal. “It is critical to note that the entire Senn community, including a very talented faculty, valuable community partners, our close university partner, Loyola University Chicago, dedicated parents and our Friends of Senn group, collectively contributed to the revitalization of Senn High School, and remains committed to continued progress.”

Lofton was given a four-year contract just one year ago by the Local School Council. However, with that now in limbo, Senn’s assistant principal Carter Carey will act as administrator in charge until an interim principal can be found.

As a strong supporter of Senn, I am deeply disappointed by this news,” Alderman Harry Osterman said in a statement issued Monday evening. “Senn is our community’s local high school, and it must be a safe, inclusive and outstanding learning institution for all the students and families in our community.”


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