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Chance The Rapper Gives $10K To These 9 Chicago Schools

By Heather Cherone | March 9, 2017 2:11pm | Updated on March 10, 2017 11:16am
 Chance the Rapper has pledged $10,000 from his Social Works Chicago nonprofit for every $100,000 raised for Chicago Public Schools.
Chance the Rapper has pledged $10,000 from his Social Works Chicago nonprofit for every $100,000 raised for Chicago Public Schools.
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Joshua Mellin

CHATHAM — Grammy Award winner Chance the Rapper announced Thursday nine more schools would get $10,000 from his nonprofit organization, Social Works Chicago, which has been collecting donations for Chicago Public Schools.


The schools are:

• Nathan S. Davis Elementary School in Brighton Park

• Mahalia Jackson Elementary School in Auburn Gresham

• Charles Carroll Elementary School in Ashburn

Clemente High School in Humboldt Park

Robeson High School in Englewood

Orr High School in Humboldt Park

Hirsch High School in Grand Crossing

Juarez High School in Pilsen

Fenger High School in Roseland

The grants are in addition to the $1 million Chance said he would donate to Chicago's schools for arts education.

"Become an active part of the solution, with your voice," Chance said on Twitter.

Chance also gave $10,000 to Westcott Elementary School in Chatham, the Chicago Public Schools graduate announced Monday.

Chance called for wealthy Chicagoans to step up and donate to Chicago schools. For every $100,000 raised, Social Works Chicago will donate $10,000 directly to a school, he said.

It was not clear how Chance — or his organization's leaders — picked the schools.

The rapper, born and raised in Chatham, met with Gov. Bruce Rauner last week, when the musician and artist said he told the governor to "take our kids off the table."

After working through the weekend to try to resolve the fiscal crisis engulfing CPS, Chance said he could not find a solution with the governor and told him to "do your job."

Chance's efforts drew praise from former first lady Michelle Obama, who thanked Chance on Twitter.

The CPS budget deficit — created when Rauner vetoed a bill that would have helped the school district pay its pension bill — threatens to force officials to end the school year on June 1 — 20 days early.

Chicago school officials have sued the state, alleging that the way Illinois funds schools is discriminatory.

The fiscal crisis for Chicago Public Schools began in November, when Rauner blamed Illinois Senate President John Cullerton for violating a compromise made in June that allowed schools to open last September. Part of that deal promised Chicago schools $215 million to help cover its pension obligation in return for statewide "pension reform," a long-held goal of the governor.

But in a December message to legislators, Rauner said he would not sign a school-funding bill because it would amount to a "bailout" for CPS. The governor also wants lawmakers to adopt his agenda, which he says will spur business growth in Illinois, as part of a budget agreement.

Cullerton denied breaking the agreement and said he was willing to continue working on pension reform with the governor.

Rauner and Speaker of the House Michael Madigan have been locked in a bitter fight over the Illinois budget that has lasted nearly two years.

Last month, CPS Chief Executive Forrest Claypool ordered four unpaid furlough days for all CPS employees to save $35 million. Earlier this month, Claypool cut $5 million by canceling professional development events for its central office staff and slashed charter school budgets by $15 million by the end of the year, officials said.

Claypool cut another $31 million by freezing a portion of schools' discretionary funds, which can be used to purchase textbooks and technology as well as to pay for after-school programs, field trips and hourly staff.

Those cuts leave a CPS deficit of $129 million, officials said.


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