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Daley: Longer school day isn’t the answer

Mayor Daley talks with Mayor Rahm Emanuel as he is honored Thursday July 28 2011 with Chicago Public Library named

Mayor Daley talks with Mayor Rahm Emanuel as he is honored Thursday, July 28, 2011 with a Chicago Public Library named in his honor at 733 N. Kedzie. | Jean Lachat~Sun-Times

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Updated: June 2, 2012 8:17AM

Lengthening the school day at Chicago public schools is a key part of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s agenda, but his predecessor doesn’t think it’s the answer to
providing a better education.

“At first I thought it was, but I don’t think so,” former Mayor Richard M. Daley said in an interview Monday night on WLS-Channel 7 News. “To me, to take a fourth-grader or a sixth-grader or a high school student, and say you’re going to stay more than six hours — we need quality instructions.”

Although Emanuel has frequently criticized the state of the city — including infrastructure and the budget — under his predecessor’s watch, Daley refused to respond to those criticisms during the taped interview.

“It doesn’t bother me,” Daley said. “It’s all part of the rhetoric.”

Daley told the station that he no longer closely follows city politics.

“Rahm is doing a very good job,” Daley said. “I’m not tuned in at all.”

Daley was also asked about his upcoming deposition in a civil suit alleging a citywide conspiracy to cover up police torture of African Americans at the hands of former Chicago Police Cmdr. Jon Burge and his underlings.

Daley said he promises his full cooperation.

“It’s a simple as that,” he said.

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