Education board analysis shows widespread benefit of Rauner's school funding changes
Nearly every public school in Illinois would receive more state money under Gov. Bruce Rauner's amended version of Senate Bill 1 than via the formula in the bill's original form, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has determined.
Rauner's office released the analysis shortly before the Senate voted to override his veto on Sunday. According to the ISBE, 97.5 percent of schools stand to gain by his changes, and none of the state’s 857 school districts would receive less funding for the 2017-2018 school year than they did a year before.
School districts in Rockford and Waukegan -- where 92 percent of students are considered to be at poverty levels -- would receive an additional $9.5 and $6.6 million, respectively, according to the press release. The top five beneficiaries of Rauner's changes also would include Elgin, Plainfield and Oswego school districts.
The Chicago Sun Times reported that Chicago Public Schools’ funding would drop by $463 million for the upcoming school year, but Rauner’s office contends that the figure would be $242 million following a $221 million pension pickup.
“This is what equity and fairness in education funding looks like,” Rauner said in the press release. “Improving Illinois’ education system has been my top priority as governor. I made these changes to Senate Bill 1 because that legislation fails to ensure fairness and equity for all children across Illinois. My changes guarantee that some of our state’s neediest districts will receive significantly more funding.”