Philadelphia Schools Hunger Strike Hits 8th Day

PHILADELPHIA (AP) â¿¿ A hunger strike to protest massive layoffs in the Philadelphia school district is in its eighth day.

Meanwhile, dozens of music teachers slated to lose their jobs played a heartfelt farewell concert Monday at district headquarters.

Education advocates are doing everything they can to draw attention to the dire situation in the city's public schools, which are facing a $304 million deficit.

To cover the gap, the district has laid off 20 percent of its staff. More than 3,800 employees will be jobless next week, from assistant principals to secretaries.

In addition to cutting music, the district has also eliminated art and sport programs.

City and state officials have been furiously negotiating to fill the funding gap, but no promises have been made.

Copyright 2011 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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