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Chicago Politicians Debate Skipping School

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Chicago Public Schools students are getting some mixed messages about ditching school—and they’re getting those mixed messages from public officials.

Earlier this week Illinois State Senator James Meeks and other community leaders told students from poorer parts of Chicago to skip their first day of school out of protest. The idea was to then go to wealthier school districts in Chicago’s northern suburbs to highlight the inequities. Chicago Mayor Richard Daley says he appreciates what Meeks is trying to do.

DALEY: You know, I know what he’s trying to point out, the disparity—the disparity between wealthier schools districts, which we understand.

But Daley says he doesn’t support the idea of kids skipping their first day because he doesn’t think it’ll help with the end goal.

DALEY: We’re really asking the state to give us a little extra money, especially for poor children.

Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich also said he cannot support kids skipping school. When it comes to increasing state funding in poor areas the governor cited a proposal to lease the state lottery, and invest the money in schools—though that plan lacks the support needed to pass.

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