SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Offering additional funds to cash-strapped Chicago Public Schools (CPS), state Rep. John D’Amico, D-Chicago, voted to pass reform that dramatically reshapes education funding in Illinois and creates a fairer, more equitable system to provide support to every public school in the state.
“Educational opportunities for children in Illinois should not be dependent on their zip-code,” D’Amico said. “The way we fund education in Illinois is regressive and antiquated. SB 1 fixes our broken system and ensures that schools in our neighborhoods are getting the funds they deserve.”
The D’Amico-backed Senate Bill 1 would, for the first time, provide Chicago schools with equitable funding, by increasing state support by $300 million annually. Most importantly, the new formula sends more money to schools with a higher percentage of students in poverty, English language learners and special needs students. Senate Bill 1 accomplishes this without reducing funding for any school in the state.
Currently, the state of Illinois contributes the fourth lowest amount to education of any state, even though the Illinois constitution mandates the state serve as the primary funder of education. As a result, local communities have to make up the state’s short fall in education funding.
Senate Bill 1 passed the House and Senate and currently awaits approval by the governor. In a recent interview Governor Rauner’s Education Secretary, Beth Purvis, was quoted as saying that the governor supports “90 percent” of the proposal.
“SB 1 will help schools in Chicago and across the state,” D’Amico said. “I urge the governor to sign this legislation and help improve the quality of education for every student in Illinois.”