Gov. Bruce Rauner morphed into a haughty French queen and Mayor Rahm Emanuel made an appearance as a gingerbread man, as parents protesting cuts to Chicago Public Schools got creative Wednesday.
About 150 or so parents marched through City Hall on their way to the Chicago Board of Education’s regularly scheduled meeting.
The protest, called the “Billion Dollar Bake Sale” rally, didn’t actually offer anything edible — but was intended to give lawmakers plenty to chew on.
Marchers carried tongue-in-cheek protest signs and displays playing off the past use of bake sales to supplement school programs and activities.
One sign featured a copy of a portrait of the French queen Marie Antoinette, with Rauner’s face superimposed on it. The caption read: “Let them sell cake.”
“A bake sale is just not going to cut it at this point,” said parent Cassie Creswell, 40, of Logan Square. “And we need real sustainable revenue for our schools, and we need everyone to do their part — the city, state and CPS.”
It wasn’t just parents who were making their voices heard Wednesday. Some CPS principals, told to brace for dramatic cuts in funding, planned to rally Wednesday afternoon at New Field Elementary School, 1707 W. Morse. Principals from at least six schools were expected to attend.
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CPS has warned some principals to expect drastic cuts to the amount of money the district allocates per student. For fourth- to eighth-graders, the cuts could range from more than $4,000, down to $2,495. It is possible some charter schools — which, though privately run, are publicly funded — would not survive cuts that extreme.
Contributing: Lauren FitzPatrick