To the editors:

The Rogers Park Tenants Committee’s Anti-Drug Abuse Group [Neighborhood News, May 11]–which includes parents; Local School Council members from Kilmer, Field, Gale, and Sullivan schools; religious leaders; and, Park District employees–welcome the June 4, 1990, announcement of “Operation S.A.F.E. (Schools Are For Education)” by Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, Superintendent of Police Leroy Martin, and General Superintendent of Schools Ted Kimbrough. Operation S.A.F.E. includes the “Posting of Safe School Zone signs around all schools, warning of increased penalties for committing crimes.” (Press Release from Marj Halperin, 6-5-90)

This is a major victory for Chicago’s schoolchildren and educational staff, one that RPTC has worked hard to achieve. To back up the sign postings, S.A.F.E. also calls for 150 additional police officers assigned to our public schools, and the establishment of a “prevention program,” which will involve numerous City Departments (Health, Human Services, Human Relations, and others) in our schools. “According to Kimbrough, Daley, and Martin, Operation S.A.F.E. will go into effect for the 1990-91 school year.” (6-5-90 Press Release)

RPTC will not spend much time responding to our detractors (Reader letters, 6-1-90). What RPTC offers instead is a sincere THANKS and CONGRATULATIONS to the numerous Rogers Parkers–community workers, institutions, 49th Ward Alderman David Orr, Joe Moore of Network 49, and Kiwanis Park Supervisor Jim Hobson–who kept their eyes on the prize and have long supported our efforts for neighborhoods and schools free from drugs, gangs and crime. Special thanks to the Reader and writer Ben Joravsky for reporting on our activities (Reader 2-23-90).

Finally, RPTC encourages parents, students, educators, religious leaders and residents of our city to forward letters and phone, calls to Mayor Daley and Superintendents Martin and Kimbrough. Commend them for these commitments to safe schools. Urge them to carry out a speedy implementation of Operation S.A.F.E. Ask them to PUT THE SIGNS UP NOW! Encourage the Mayor to post signs at our nonpublic schools and parks, as well.

RPTC Anti-Drug Abuse Group

W. Morse