© 2024 NPR Illinois
The Capital's Community & News Service
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
Dusty Rhodes headshot
Education Desk
The Education Desk is our education blog focusing on key areas of news coverage important to the state and its improvement. Evidence of public policy performance and impact will be reported and analyzed. We encourage you to engage in commenting and discussing the coverage of education from pre-natal to Higher Ed.Dusty Rhodes curates this blog that will provide follow-up to full-length stories, links to other reports of interest, statistics, and conversations with you about the issues and stories.About - Additional Education Coverage00000179-2419-d250-a579-e41d385d0000

Education Desk: Gov Recommends Slashin' Higher Ed (Again)

Courtesy of IBHE

The budget that Gov. Bruce Rauner proposed yesterday recommends a 16 percent cut to higher education. This year's proposed cut sounds gentler than the 32 percent reduction Rauner recommended last year. But instead of being spread across higher education, virtually all of the pain would fall upon the state's universities.

These proposed reductions come after higher education has gone without state funding of any kind for more than seven months.

James Applegate, executive director of the state board of higher education, says low-income students who rely on the state's Monetary Award Program are bearing the brunt of the current budget impasse.

"And we're concerned that this breaking the trust on MAP could lead a lot of students to just not even apply. Because why? And that would be a tragedy," he said.

Rauner's budget would, if enacted, fund MAP at the 2015 level.

If the existence of an industry of similar size and power was threatened, state officials would try to save it, Applegate said. He cited a recent study that shows 56 percent of Illinois jobs require a baccalaureate degree, and only 19 percent of the workforce has one -- an argument he says isn’t out of step with the governor’s pro-business agenda.

"Unless you are supporting the college education -- two and four-year -- of your workforce,” Applegate says,  “you're not investing in the future."

After a long career in newspapers (Dallas Observer, The Dallas Morning News, Anchorage Daily News, Illinois Times), Dusty returned to school to get a master's degree in multimedia journalism. She began work as Education Desk reporter at NPR Illinois in September 2014.
Related Stories