CHICAGO (CBS) — Mayor Rahm Emanuel is defending the Chicago Public Schools for balancing the system’s budget through what some say is the risky step of draining the school system’s “rainy day fund.”

As WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports, the Chicago School Board wants to close its budget deficit in part by using all of its $432 million reserve fund.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports

Mayor Emanuel denies that the action amounts to kicking the can down the road, as far as finances are concerned.

“A lot of people were kicking the can down the road when it came to our kids’ education – locking our kids into the shortest school day and the shortest school year in the country,” Emanuel said. “I wasn’t kicking that can down the road any longer.”

Furthermore, Emanuel said, the school board he appointed has made major budget cuts.

“In the last year alone – the last 14 months – I’ve taken a half a million dollars – the Chicago Public School Board has – a half a billion dollars out of the central office,” Emanuel said.

But CPS officials admit that while they are maintaining programs, they face a deficit next year too.