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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

Uncertain Future For School Funding Formula; Rauner Vows To Veto Bill

Flickr user / alamosbasement "old school" (CC BY 2.0)

In a maneuver some state lawmakers call a "booby trap," the spending plan approved last week says Illinois can't appropriate money for schools unless a new funding formula also wins approval. It ties K-12 dollars to something known as the "evidence-based model."

Credit Flickr user / alamosbasement "old school" (CC BY 2.0)

Both political parties endorse this model, which is based on each district's demographics. The Democrats' version has passed the House and the Senate; they haven't sent it to Gov. Bruce Rauner, however, because he has promised to veto it.

Representative Will Davis, of Homewood, sponsored that bill and had, until recently, been negotiating with Republicans to try to make it something Rauner would sign, but he said Republicans wanted to add vouchers and other items that hadn't been part of school funding before.

"I won't even call this the 11th hour,” he said. “How about the 11-59th hour. So again, is that all about derailing the overall conversation? Just putting another item on the board that we've now got to deal with?"

The state has not fully-funded schools since 2009, and some districts warn they won't be able to operate more than a few months without state money. ​

Copyright 2021 WNIJ Northern Public Radio. To see more, visit WNIJ Northern Public Radio.

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.
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