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How bankers are set to profit from Rahm’s preschool plan

As a public service announcement for the people of Chicago, I’d like to urge each and every one of you to beware of any claims by Mayor Emanuel about how he’s expanding preschool for poor kids, because I have a feeling he’s preparing the campaign ads as we speak.

ANALYSIS

The mayor has promised to offer pre-K programming to about 2,600 more children over the next four years, but this is most definitely not a boon for poor kids.

It is instead an ingeniously crafted public-relations stunt that could double the cost of expanding the program while transferring as much as $17 million from our schools to a bunch of fabulously rich people.

Then they can contribute even more to the mayor’s campaign coffers. Hey, someone’s got to pay for those commercials.

To make matters worse, it guarantees that a couple thousand low-income kids—the very children who need pre-K programming the most—won’t get it.

Hey, Mr. Mayor, feel free to work all of that into a campaign spot.

Look, I agree with the mayor that we need to expand pre-K opportunities for poor children so they can be in a better position to compete with their wealthier peers as they advance through school.

But I think cutting a deal with investment bankers is the wrong way to do it.

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