Gov's SB1 Veto Surprises Some In His Party

Schools are set to receive payment from the state in just three days, but that can't happen until the Illinois legislature approves a new "evidence-based" funding model.

School Funding Depends On Compromise Or 36+71

With schools set to open in just a few weeks, Illinois still doesn't have any way to send money to schools. K-12 funding has become the latest partisan battleground at the statehouse, and yesterday, one procedural misstep may have inadvertently made the gridlock even worse.

ISBE Supplied Staffers DIY School Funding Simulator

Gov. Bruce Rauner has launched a website to show that most school districts stand to gain more state funding under his plan than under the Democrats' plan. How he calculated those numbers is a question reporters have asked repeatedly. We turned to the state board of education for answers.

School Funding Special Session Keeps Legislators & Gov. At Odds

After the first day of a special session on education, Democratic lawmakers and the Republican Governor Bruce Rauner appear no closer to resolving the dispute that could hold up money for school districts. Rauner continues to demand Democrats send him the funding plan so he can change it and remove additional money for Chicago teacher pensions.

Gov Presses School Funding Fight

Gov. Bruce Rauner is calling lawmakers back from their summer vacation to deal with a new school funding plan in special session starting Wednesday. The issue has turned into a showdown between the Republican governor and the Democrat-controlled legislature, with the fate of k-12 school children in the balance.

Rauner Gives Dems A Deadline For School Bill

Monday at high noon — That's the deadline Gov . Bruce Rauner has given Democrats to send the school funding bill to his desk. The new state budget requires this revamped funding formula, but Rauner plans to veto certain parts of the plan. He promises every school district — except Chicago — lots more money once he gets to veto portions of the Democrats' bill.

Rauner Demands School Funding Bill Now

Lawmakers approved a state budget more than a week ago. But the education portion remains uncertain. For the money to flow, Democrats added a provision that requires enactment of a new school funding plan . Democrats have passed such a plan through both chambers, but Gov. Bruce Rauner, a Republican, says he'll veto parts of it.

Lawsuit Demanding School Funding Gains More Plaintiffs

The shakeup in Gov. Bruce Rauner's office seems to signal a tougher stance on school funding. The state spending plan passed by the General Assembly requires adoption of a new funding formula, but Rauner has promised to veto the only school formula plan that got legislative approval. This standoff might make the lawsuit filed by 21 school superintendents more relevant. The lawsuit, filed in April, demands that Illinois honor its constitutional obligation to provide a high quality education for all students.

School Funding Tops Short List Of Demands

On Sunday, House Speaker Michael Madigan issued three demands for budget negotiations, and one of them was for Gov. Bruce Rauner to sign Senate Bill 1 — a massive overhaul to the state's school funding structure. But he also said he was open to changes in that bill. Education Desk reporter Dusty Rhodes gives us a refresher course on what those changes might be.

The High Price Of Poverty

If you had to place a bet on where student test scores have plummeted over the past decade and a half, where would you put your money? Chicago Public Schools? Galesburg? Urbana? A new study on student achievement in Illinois shows some surprising results.

Barickman's School Funding 'Compromise' Focuses On CPS

Earlier this week, a group of Illinois Republicans announced a series of compromise measures they said could lead to a state budget. It includes a revised school funding plan, sponsored by State Senator Jason Barickman, of Bloomington. Barickman calls his latest plan quote a huge step forward. It omits controversial language about collective bargaining, and on some areas, it duplicates the Democrats' plan, known as Senate Bill 1. But like Gov. Bruce Rauner and his education czar, Beth Purvis, Barickman still isn't happy with that plan.

School Funding Battle Boils Down To CPS. Again.

The fate of school funding reform in Illinois hinges on downstate sentiment about Chicago Public Schools, and legislators' grasp of a complex, new formula. The governor has already pledged to veto the legislation. And now, the battle has State Sen. Andy Manar accusing Education Secretary Beth Purvis of lying.

Community Colleges: Can't Keep Pulling Rabbits Out Of Hats

The ongoing budget impasse has been particularly difficult for Illinois' institutions of higher education, which have received a mere fraction of their usual state funds. Community colleges depend on the state to supply 30 percent of their overall budget, but that formula has evaporated over the past two years. John Avendano is the president of Kankakee Community College, but he's also president of the Presidents Council — the group made up of all Illinois community college presidents. He spoke with our Education Desk reporter about the special challenges these schools face.

Pritchard Calls For Schools To Close

Illinois lawmakers last week approved a sweeping overhaul of the way the state funds public schools. Mainly Democrats supported the plan, but the top Republican co-sponsor chose not to vote at all.

Illinois School Funding 101: A Water Cooler Q&A

As budget negotiations continue, one big piece of the puzzle is school funding. We check in with our Education Desk reporter to see which bills are on the table, what they would do, why some "news" outlets say districts would lose money, and whether there's any chance a bill will pass.

School Funding Bill Clears Procedural Hurdle

Lawmakers of both parties, and even Gov. Bruce Rauner, agree that Illinois doesn't fund schools in an equitable manner. But with the legislative session scheduled to end on May 31, they still can't agree on exactly how to fix it. One plan earned bipartisan approval in a House committee today, clearing a procedural hurdle that positions it for possible speedy passage.

Ed Funding Reform: A Question Of "What's Reasonable?"

It can be tough to find a bipartisan effort on any substantive issue at the capitol. But State Representatives Will Davis (a Democrat) and Bob Pritchard (a Republican) are still co-sponsoring House Bill 2808 , designed to make school funding more equitable. These two lawmakers were both members of Governor Bruce Rauner's School Funding Reform Commission. That was a bipartisan, bicameral group that spent six months studying Illinois school funding issues and creating a framework for how to fix it. ​​​Last night, they sat down for an impromptu chat about their legislation, and why it keeps changing, with our education desk reporter, Dusty Rhodes.

School Funding Fight Heats Up

Two school funding plans progressed in the Illinois legislature Wednesday. A plan sponsored by Sen. Andy Manar was approved in the Senate, while in the House, a very similar plan sponsored by Rep. Will Davis made it through committee. Does that mean lawmakers may have finally found a way to cure the state's infamously unfair school funding structure?

Small And Mid-Size Public Universities Feeling Brunt Of Budget Stalemate

Higher education has been among the areas feeling the state budget impasse as funding has been cut. It has forced some schools to reduce classes, lay off employees and, in some cases, close for several days. But a review of enrollment indicates small and mid-sized public universities are taking a double hit. "We found our large schools, our flagship schools, they are experiencing modest increases in enrollment over the past couple of years. And that's on trend with some other states," said Sarah Brune, Executive Director of the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform. She said the group conducted the study to see the effects of the impasse on the institutions. The small and mid-sized schools are seeing declines, meaning not only less state funds, but also fewer tuition dollars. Over both 2 year and 5 year time frames, some schools have seen big drops in the number of students who attend. "We wanted to look into that and use enrollment, which is only one of the many factors you can look

Small And Mid-Size Public Universities Feeling Brunt Of Budget Stalemate

Ceremony For Black Grads 'Steeped In Our Tradition'

Commencement ceremonies took place on many college campuses this past weekend, including the University of Illinois. Our Education Desk reporter takes us inside one that's different from all the others — the Black Congratulatory ceremony at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana.