From The Chicago Tribune: Chicago Public Schools officials have reported an upswing in first-day attendance at most schools. First-day attendance Tuesday rose to 94.7 percent of students, up from 92.9 percent last year. District officials said it was the highest first-day attendance since the district began using a new system four years ago to track students on their first day. Officials credited their grass-roots campaign, which included phone banks, robo-calls to students' homes from celebrities, and Google and Facebook ads. The mayor also asked other city agencies to pitch in and remind residents of back-to-school dates, and the local transit system offered students and their parents free rides to and from school on Tuesday.