Asbestos that closed Philly high schools exposed deep rifts

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Maurice Boston, a freshman at Ben Franklin H.S., shows his support at a packed meeting discussing the closures of Ben Franklin and Science Leadership Academy high schools because of asbestos remediation at the school district building Monday morning. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Maurice Boston, a freshman at Ben Franklin H.S., shows his support at a packed meeting discussing the closures of Ben Franklin and Science Leadership Academy high schools because of asbestos remediation at the school district building Monday morning. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

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About 1,000 students are finally back in class this week after construction delays and the discovery of asbestos forced a building housing two Philadelphia high schools to close for more than three weeks. While officials scrambled to find a space for them, parents pushed back hard on the district’s proposals. WHYY education reporter Avi Wolfman-Arent explains why this fiasco exposed parents’ anxieties about the safety of Philly’s schools.

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