New soccer field opens at Michelle Clark Magnet High School in Austin

A new soccer field has officially opened at Michelle Clark Magnet High School in Austin, Chicago.

CHICAGO (WLS) — The addition to Michelle Clark Magnet High School is a win for the community. “With everything going on in the world, it’s nice to have something like this to keep the kids focused,” said Dee Blackmon, a Lelanda Elementary parent.

On Friday, the new soccer field east of the school building was officially opened for use by the middle school and surrounding elementary schools. “Everything intersects and makes it difficult for our students to succeed, so having a facility like this in our backyard makes a lot of sense,” said Cachetta Potts, co-chair of the Austin Community Action Council. “There is,” he said.

“There’s a sense of family here that’s essential for something like this to work. And the main reason it worked is because these kids are loved.” The leaders here love the kids and that makes a difference,” said Clark LSC President and Grandparent Henry McDavid.

Director Charles Anderson said the project had been in the works for seven years. Changes in Chicago Public Schools’ management structure, real estate acquisition, zoning changes, and construction-related paperwork all took time.

He says it was worth the investment of time and energy to attract and retain talented students and provide a safe space for local children. “Folks in Austin, it’s a big step to say enough is enough because we’re here,” Anderson said.

Until now, the school’s soccer team had only held limited practices in parks and vacant lots. He said the players are ready for next season.

“We’re not taking this for granted. We did our job and it’s going to be a great season this year,” Clark Eagles kicker Amarja Devine said.

Since Clark was originally a high school, its gymnasium is too small to accommodate all the students. The next project is to provide a high school gym school.

Schools and public leaders said they would like to see investments to continue their child and community property.

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