CPS officials remind of school start date

August 24, 2009 (CHICAGO) Chicago Public Schools classes begin two weeks from Tuesday, and as usual, there is a big push to make sure students are at their desks when that first bell rings.

Consequently, school officials are getting help from star athletes trying to get the word out about that first day of school.

CPS officials, athletic stars and committee leaders were all in Chatham, trying to get that back-to-school message out once again. They gathered first at a school, and then they went door-to-door to remind everybody about the all-important start date for Chicago Public Schools.

School starts Tuesday, September 8.

Funding is based partially on the first-day enrollment figures. And school leaders and parents stress it's a matter of safety.

"People very much like to focus on Chicago public school students being shot," said Ron Huberman, Chicago Public Schools, CEO. "And while certainly the numbers tell a story and they inspire all of us to find much better ways more aggressively to keep our kids safe, the question that parents ask is, what can I do to keep my kids safe? And the safest place they can be is on school grounds, safest place they can be is in school. Not one student was shot on school grounds, not one student was killed at all last year. So the number I talk about is zero, and that's the amount of our students hurt on Chicago public school property, and that's exactly what we need kids in school."

Officials also stressed parental involvement.

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