Emanuel defends longer school day

May 1, 2012 8:13:54 PM PDT
Mayor Rahm Emanuel defended his plan for a longer school day after former Mayor Richard M. Daley questioned the idea.

Daley told ABC 7's Ben Bradley exclusively that he used to favor the longer day but has changed his mind. He said he thinks the quality of instruction is more important.

Emanuel has made the longer day the cornerstone of his effort to improve the public schools.

This was the first public disagreement between the men, and on Tuesday Emanuel tried to demonstrate they're really not that far apart.

"I agree with him on the better instruction," Emanuel said. "Quality instruction is essential, which is why I fought for being one of the first cities in the country to adopt a core curriculum and I think the foundation for achieving that quality instruction is a full day and a full year."

Daley has made a point of backing the importance of after school programs and Emanuel says he also agrees on that point.