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CPS adding new course on history of Jon Burge torture cases

By Matt Masterson, Chicago Tonight/WTTW

Chicago Public Schools students will soon begin learning about the crimes, cover-up and eventual conviction of one of the city’s most infamous law enforcement officials: Jon Burge.

Over the next two weeks, Chicago teachers will review the curriculum for a new districtwide course on the history of the disgraced former Chicago Police Department commander who systematically abused and tortured suspects on the South Side to force confessions for two decades.

The three to five week class – titled “Reparations Won: A Case Study in Police Torture, Racism And the Movement for Justice in Chicago” – was developed through the CPS Department of Social Science and Civic Engagement as part of a professional learning series for eighth and 10th graders beginning next school year, according to CPS documents.

This comes more than a year after the city passed a $5.5 million reparations package for torture survivors that included, in part, a lesson on the cases to be included in CPS’ existing history curriculum.


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