State Sen. Karen McConnaughay, R-St. Charles, issued the following news release:
State Sen. Karen McConnaughay, R-St. Charles, is among the legislators appointed to the newly formed Advisory Committee on Education Funding. Members of the bi-partisan committee have been assembled to study ways to make education funding between downstate and suburban, and Chicago schools more equitable.
Senate Joint Resolution 32, which formed the committee, was passed in response [ http://www.senategop.state.il.us/News/NewsDetails/tabid/120/nid/475/r/4/Default.aspx ] to a report published by Senate Republicans revealing disparity in education funding in Illinois. The study revealed that the funding gap between Chicago Public Schools and suburban and downstate schools favors Chicago schools by more than $660 million a year.
The Senate Republican Caucus confirmed the disparity using data provided by the Illinois State Board of Education. The Caucus study revealed the state’s system of education funding has gradually shifted to disproportionately benefit Chicago Public Schools in many funding areas, including Poverty Grants. In fact, over a three year average, Chicago Public Schools received $2,512 for every impoverished student, while schools in downstate and suburban school districts receive significantly less funding. Senator McConnaughay said this serious inequity is just one reason a study of the state’s education funding system is desperately needed.
“I’m happy to see that leaders in the General Assembly are willing to discuss and tackle such an important issue,’ said Senator McConnaughay. “I’m honored to have the opportunity to put political differences aside and work to make the education funding formula simpler and more equitable so that we can provide adequate funding for children in all of Illinois’ school districts.”