For more Chicago Public Schools students than ever before, summer just isn't what it used to be.
The district is expanding its year-round school program this year, more than tripling the number of schools that operate on the so-called Track E calendar. On Monday, CPS officials, including CEO Ron Huberman, went door-to-door, handing out backpacks and other school supplies while reminding parents that school starts far earlier for their kids this year.
For students on the Track E calendar, summer break is essentially cut in half, but in return they get two and three-week breaks in the fall, winter and spring.
Those kids go back to school on Aug. 10 this year, nearly a month before other schools start. That means less time away from books, and officials hope it also means less time getting students back in the groove of things at the start of the year.
This year, 132 CPS schools are on the Track E program, up from 41 schools last year.