AC installed in some CPS schools ahead of first day, other challenges remain

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For tens of thousands of suburban kids, today it was goodbye summer, hello school year.

Chicago Public School kids will not return to class until the day after Labor Day but today, some schools in the city got air conditioning installed.

At Bouchet Elementary Math and Science Academy at 73rd and Jeffery, Mayor Emanuel and Schools CEO Forest Claypool were on hand today as some of the last of air conditioners are being installed.

By next year, Emanuel says he will deliver on a promise that every CPS classroom will have the same to foster the best academic atmosphere possible.

But the challenges to the district are many including an ongoing labor impasse with the Chicago Teacher's Union. The possibility of another teacher's strike looms large.

The more immediate concern is trying to secure a line of credit to the tune of $1.5 billion dollars that will help pay bills that will soon be due.

CEO Claypool says negotiations with several large banks are ongoing.

But with a poor credit rating, higher rates will be inevitable so borrowing money will be costly. The district has already put aside $35 million dollars just to pay interest on the forthcoming loans.

Along with the challenges in the classroom, there are the ones outside too, namely trying to keep kids safe going to and returning from school.

The Safe Passage program will be back but as the statistics attest more than a dozen Chicago children have been shot this summer, the unintended targets in the city's gang wars.

The most recent an 8-year-old girl in the Austin neighborhood shot just last night as she attended ironically a peace vigil.