Mayor Emanuel, CPS unveil plan for new graduation requirement

CHICAGO -- Mayor Rahm Emanuel and CPS officials are unveiling a new plan aimed at ensuring that Chicago high school students are better prepared for life after graduation.

A new graduation requirement: CPS students must plan for college or set another professional purpose or goal.

The new "Learn. Plan. Succeed" initiative aims to get kids to view high school graduation as a milestone to something more, not the end goal.

Ideally, more will aim for higher education either within the city college system or beyond.

The mayor's office says Chicago will become the first city to institute such a graduation requirement.

It all begins with current freshmen. Students in the class of 2020 will be required to have a post-high school plan, whether it's college, work, vocational training, or military service.

After touting the new initiative, Emanuel took aim at President Trump for criticizing Chicago schools this week.

The mayor has instructed his office to send proof of major CPS performance improvements and very competitive Chicago test scores to the Trump White House.

However, the immediate challenge for CPS remains a massive budget gap after Governor Rauner vetoed $215-million in state funding.

As a result, CPS may end the current school year three-weeks early.

Adding to the CPS mess, a threatened one-day walkout by the Chicago Teachers Union -- like they did a year ago this month. Though union leaders are indicating the Mayday strike may not happen after all.

The union's house of delegates is meeting tonight to discuss and decide the CTU's next move.