Hundreds of CPS Students Protest Budget Crisis

Hundreds of students from Chicago Public Schools plan to rally in front of the James R. Thompson Center downtown

Around 400 students from Chicago Public Schools held a rally Friday afternoon in front of the James R. Thompson Center downtown.

The students chanted "S.O.S., save our schools," in their attempt to pressure Illinois lawmakers to pass a budget that will fund CPS. The state has gone without a budget since July 1.

CPS said in a statement the district hopes the students' "voices will be heard loud and clear in the Governor’s office."

"Our students just want to be treated the same as other children around the state, and we will continue to demand that Gov. Rauner fix the unfair funding formula that punishes Chicago children," the statement read.

Governor Bruce Rauner's office released a statement urging Mayor Emanuel and members of the General Assembly to work with him "to help pass the reforms the district needs."

"After signing legislation to increase education funding to record levels this year, Governor Rauner has presented a comprehensive plan to help Chicago Public Schools. The value of Governor Rauner’s plan is worth nearly $800 million to CPS over next two years, while providing financial support to districts across the state," the statement read.

In September Forrest Claypool, the head of CPS, announced the possible layoffs of 5,000 teachers by Thanksgiving if the district does not receive financial support from the state.

Meanwhile, students have planned a series of events, including a study-in, march, and scheduled speakers:

4:00 - 4:30 p.m.: Study-In at Thompson Center
4:30 - 5:00 p.m.: Rally in front of Thompson Center
5:00 - 5:45 p.m.: March around the block
5:45 - 6:30 p.m.: Rally with speakers including students from Jones College Prep, Walter Payton College Prep, Kennedy HS, and Kelly HS, Alderman John Arena, and State Representative Will Guzzardi

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