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Pedro Martinez speaks Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021 outside his alma mater, Benito Juarez High School in Pilsen. (WTTW News)

The Chicago Public Schools graduate and former CPS chief financial officer under then-CEO Arne Duncan is expected to take control of the nation’s third-largest school district later this month, becoming the first Latino CEO within CPS.

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(WTTW News)

It was early August, just before most students returned to their classrooms for the new school year, that Gov. J.B. Pritzker issued an executive order requiring students, teachers and staff to wear masks in school, regardless of their vaccination status — or face the consequences.

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(WTTW News)

Most Chicago Public Schools students have now been back in the classroom for over a week, but some parents, teachers and students say they don’t feel safe from COVID-19 in school buildings — and they’re demanding access to remote learning. 

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(WTTW News)

Mayor Lori Lightfoot and interim Chicago Public Schools CEO Jose Torres on Thursday unveiled a new Chicago Families Forward Fund, which they say will distribute more than $9 million in assistance to CPS families before the end of the fall semester.

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Under a new law recently signed by Governor J.B. Pritzker, students can take up to five mental or behavioral health days off from school, without having to provide a doctor’s note. (WTTW News)

Starting in January, students ages 7-17 can take up to five mental or behavioral health days off from school without having to provide a doctor’s note. Under the new law, students are referred to school staff for professional help after their second mental health day.

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Roberto Clemente Community Academy High School in Chicago. (WTTW News)

Whether to keep cops in schools has been a controversial subject for years. With Chicago Public Schools back in session, we hear how some high schools made the choice to remove or maintain the police presence in their hallways.

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College campuses across the state with the return of in-person classes and activities after more than a year. (WTTW News)

There are lots of familiar sights on college campuses across the state as students return to lecture halls and activities. But what exactly has this transition from largely virtual instruction to in-person been like?

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Students at Chicago Public Schools walk along a hallway in this file photo. (WTTW News)

For the first time in 17 months, Chicago Public Schools students returned to the classroom for full-time, in-person learning Monday. At some schools, the mayor was there to welcome them back.

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Teachers rally at a demonstration against COVID-19 vaccination mandates, Wednesday, Aug. 25, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo / Mary Altaffer)

Some of the biggest school systems in the U.S. are taking a hard line with teachers and staff members who are not yet vaccinated against COVID-19: Get a jab or lose your job. 

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(WTTW News)

It’s been more than a year since Chicago Public Schools students have sat inside their classrooms full time. Now, with mask mandates, vaccine requirements for staff and other COVID-19 safety protocols in place, CPS children are about to embark on a year unlike any other.

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In this file photo, CPS students sit masked and socially distanced. (WTTW News)

Chicago Public Schools students are scheduled to return for in-person classes Monday. But what will that return look like amid an ongoing pandemic? CPS parents join “Chicago Tonight: Latino Voices” for a panel discussion.

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Students sit masked and socially distanced in a CPS classroom. (WTTW News)

With the new school year set to begin Monday, Chicago Public Schools interim CEO Jose Torres said he believes the district has done enough to protect both students and staff amid a surge in COVID-19 infections.

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New fall programs offered by City Colleges are aimed at helping Chicagoans start or resume their college education amid the pandemic. (WTTW News)

New fall programs offered by the City Colleges of Chicago system aim to help city residents start or resume their college education amid the pandemic.

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A young student wears a mask while working on a laptop. (WTTW News)

Chicago Public Schools will welcome students back to the classroom in less than two weeks, as the delta variant of COVID-19 is driving the number of infections up across the city. The rising case count has put another wedge between CPS and the Chicago Teachers Union.

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(WTTW News)

Chicago Public Schools will not require eligible students to get a COVID-19 vaccine, but once in-person classes resume Aug. 30, those who are unvaccinated and test positive for the virus must quarantine for 14 days.

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Al Raby High School teacher Jasmine Jones, second from left, and her students talk about their solar panel project. (WTTW News)
A group of students on the West Side are determined to make a big change by confronting environmental issues and working to bring solar energy to their community. We learn more about their vision for Garfield Park.