Welcome to the Reader's morning briefing for Tuesday, March 1, 2016.
After a brief break from winter, below-freezing temperatures and snow will return to Chicago for the first day of March. It's possible that one to three inches of snow could fall during the afternoon—and stick. Expect a high of 32 and a low of 19. [AccuWeather]
Chicago has its first confirmed case of Zika virus, a dangerous disease transmitted largely by mosquitos that's spreading quickly through Latin America and is linked to serious birth defects. A nonpregnant woman who recently traveled to Colombia contracted Zika but has made a full recovery, according to officials at Presence Saint Joseph Hospital on the north side. [Tribune]
Forrest Claypool, CEO of CPS, announced that the struggling school district has cut 62 employees, including 17 teachers. The Chicago Teachers Union is not pleased. Midyear layoffs are rare, but CPS has been forced to slash $85 million from its budget due to the ongoing state budget crisis, according to Claypool. [DNAinfo Chicago]
Getting a highly coveted spot at any of Chicago's selective-enrollment public high schools is no small feat, but a seat at Walter Payton College Prep is the hardest to come by, according to data released by CPS. Acceptance is based on a mix of grades, standardized test scores, and a high school admissions test, but there are tiered spots available based on socioeconomic need. [DNAinfo Chicago]
Mayor Rahm Emanuel blasted controversial GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump Monday for not denouncing Klu Klux Klan leader David Duke (who has endorsed him for president) and retweeting a quote from World War II Italian fascist dictator Benito Mussolini on Twitter. Even though the mayor's been a vocal supporter of Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton, he said he doesn't want to assume it will be easy for Democrats to run against the colorful reality-TV star. [Tribune]
The latest entry on River North's competitive nightlife scene is hoping to bring a new spin to the city. Spin Ping Pong has been a huge hit in New York City, and now table-tennis enthusiasts have to wait just until March 4 for its Chicago outpost to open in Marina City. The "ping pong social club," which was cofounded by actress Susan Sarandon, serves food and alcohol; other locations are in Toronto, New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. [Eater Chicago]