A boycott of Chicago Public Schools, in which nearly 1,000 students took part, ended abruptly Wednesday after Gov. Rod. Blagojevich refused to discuss funding issues with state Sen. James Meeks (D-15th) unless the boycott stopped. The protest, over inequ
A boycott of Chicago Public Schools, in which nearly 1,000 students took part, ended abruptly Wednesday after Gov. Rod. Blagojevich refused to discuss funding issues with state Sen. James Meeks (D-15th) unless the boycott stopped. The protest, over inequitable school funding, was supposed to last at least through the rest of the week. “We’ve decided to call the boycott off to call the governor’s bluff and to seek a meeting with him so that our kids can return to school,” Meeks said at a Wednesday news conference. He and a group of ministers organized the boycott. Meeks, who is also the pastor of Salem Baptist Church on the South Side, had hoped to meet with the governor today but has been told that the governor won’t be available to meet until sometime next week, according to Tasha Harris, communications director for Salem Baptist Church. However, Lucio Guerrero, director of communications for Blagojevich said no meeting has been set at this point. “The governor would be happy to meet with him, (and) our office is in the process of trying to schedule a meeting,” he said. “The governor believes that it is wrong to use children as political pawns and is glad to see that Sen. Meeks has called off his boycott.” Both Mayor Richard M. Daley and Arne Duncan, CEO of Chicago Public Schools, said while they applaud Meeks for bringing attention to the matter, a boycott was not the way to go about changing the current school funding formula. ______ To see more photos from the boycott, click here.
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