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Mayor: Chicago students safer than years past

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Education,Illinois

CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, accompanied by U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, trumpeted figures showing the latest public school year was the safest for students in the last seven years.

It has been a year since Chicago Public Schools closed 50 schools it deemed underutilized or failing. There were concerns students walking longer distances to school would fall victim to violence. Hundreds of Safe Passage monitors lined streets to protect students.

Emanuel said Wednesday the improvement was aided by a shift in school discipline, from expulsion first to restorative justice, while tutoring and mentoring troublemakers who remain in school.

In a statement, the Chicago Teachers Union said there is a need by Chicago Public Schools to hire nurses, psychologists, counselors and social workers to support students and their families.

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