Chicago Chess League

Chess transforms lives.

The Chicago Chess League is a competitive chess league launched by Renaissance Knights in partnership with Chicago Public Schools to affords additional engagement opportunities to students from diverse communities across the city of Chicago to participate in vibrant chess programs. The chess league is governed by a Board of community members, known as the Chicago Chess Council.

Renaissance Knights was founded in 2005 and partnered with the Chicago Public Schools’ chess program in 2006. Starting with less than 25 schools and 150 students competing in chess tournaments, the program has grown to over serving approximately 650 students each year from 50 schools.  The CCL has reached in excess of 10,000 students since inception.

Chess provides students with unparalleled 21st century skills in reading, math, critical thinking, public policy analysis, evidence-based argumentation, civic engagement, teamwork and communication.

Chess levels the playing field. Age, gender, ethnic background, socioeconomic status, and spoken language are irrelevant factors when playing chess. Chess provides students with unparalleled 21st century skills in reading, math,critical and analytical thinking, decision making, pattern recognition, logical deductive reasoning to solve problems and sportsmanship.

Chess research-proven to increase GPAs, test scores, and graduation rates. Chess prepares students for success in college, career and life, and creates a culture of excellence at schools throughout the city. In classrooms and on the chess board, studnets are preparing for their future success. Chess empowers all participating students, and thereby helps create school-wide norms and expectations of academic excellence.

Tournament details can be found at CCL Tournaments