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HomeEducationRauner announces bi-partisan commission for new school funding formula proposal

Rauner announces bi-partisan commission for new school funding formula proposal



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CHICAGO – Governor Bruce Rauner held a press conference Tuesday to announce the formation of a 25-member bi-partisan, bi-cameral commission to propose ways Illinois' education funding can be equalized and improved – a new funding formula for Fiscal Year 2018. Rev. James Meeks will facilitate the group's meetings.

Rauner pointed out three key points as to why the commission was a priority:

  1. "I ran for governor to make Illinois schools the best in America," Rauner said. "Education should come first. Education funding should not be treated as a political football."
  2. "Illinois is dead last among 50 states for the percentage of education funding that comes from the state. We're the state that depends on property taxes more than any other state," Rauner said. 
  3. "Illinois has the largest gap in spending between the highest income and the lowest income schools. Education is a right and must be a priority," he said. We need both equity and an increase in the funding levels."

"This won't be easy," Governor Rauner said. "Democrats don't agree with themselves how this should be done, and Republicans don't agree among themselves either."

Still, Rauner said, he's optimistic that a new formula can be agreed upon.


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  1. No offense to the governor but we don’t need a new “funding formula.” We need less funding with less taxes, less spending, and less borrowing.
    Solutions include elimination of the pensions (moved reunify to social security) and balanced budgets. Pensions is existing should be shift to local school districts to force balanced budgets.
    Other solutions is s focus on the parents, tax payers , and the kids rather then the teachers, vendors, unions, and contractors.
    Easy solutions, charter schools, private schools, online schools, less federal intervention, home schooling, right to work, and vouchers.

  2. Property taxes, although high, do at least allow money that is collected locally to be spent locally. I would rather have that than give money down some rathole called “the state” and then have that money redistributed by the whims of Springfield.
    In order to reduce property taxes, citizens must get more involved locally and actually vote in local elections and get fiscal conservatives in there. And people who know how to negotiate.
    I have said this before as well, the state needs to devolve the school districts in to more local districts in order for there to be more local accountability and involvement. bring back 10,000 districts rather than the 890 we now have.
    Consolidation has gone hand in hand with increased spending. Maybe we need to look at a different methodology.

  3. More education funding usually means more money for salaries and pensions. I don’t think most people realize how excessive teacher salaries are in Illinois. Two thirds of school districts also pick up the pension costs that teachers are supposed to be paying. For example, look at the Kaneland 2015-2016 salary schedule (http://web.kaneland.org/sites/default/files//files/Kaneland%20Salary%20Compensation%20Report%202015-2016.pdf).
    You will notice that there is a column for “other benefits.” Almost every individual in that schedule receives thousands and thousands of dollars in “other benefits.” I assume that is the pension pickup. Kaneland is in Kane County, not exactly the north shore.

  4. Frank, more districts will lead to much higher costs. In my home town of about 36,000 people, there are 4 elementary districts, each with its superintendent, assistant superintendent, principals at every school, curriculum director, etc. All of these people earn 6 figures, some over $300,000.
    In my home town, huge savings could be achieved if all 4 districts were consolidated, as they should be. Every one of these administrators will receive TRS pensions at 75% average of their highest consecutive 4 years of working, putting more pressure on taxpayers.
    Another thing: administrator salaries are so high because teacher salaries are very high. Administrators don’t want to earn less than teachers, so ever escalating teacher salaries also raise administrator salaries.

  5. Consolidation has gotten us in this mess. If you devolve the districts and make each school building its own district there will be more citizens involved in budgeting at a local level. This will lead to tighter control of expenses at each school.
    Some of those superintendents make so much because they run multiple schools. If you have a supt controlling one school only, it will reduce the salary amounts. You won’t need as many assistants either. Yes some teacher salaries are high. I’ve compared quite a few districts and in some the salaries are not really competitive. Poor negotiating by some districts though.
    It’s obvious that consolidation has led to the present situation. As RW said above, larger governments are less accountable because its harder for citizens to control them. Few people vote in local elections so that is bad as well. But I think people would get more involved if they had more control over their own school building.

  6. 1.”I ran for governor to make Illinois schools the best in America,” Rauner said.
    Then you’re going to need to replace the citizens of Chicago with somebody else that starts out with higher IQs. GIGO.

  7. I disagree with many of you on consolidation. Illinois has the most taxing units (7000) of the 50 states along with the most elected officials at 43,000. Chicago is adding an elected school board of 21 so soon we will have 43,021.
    We need to consolidate and eliminate. We need to eliminate both the federal and state boards of education, both a complete waste.,
    The vast industrial educational complex is full of waste, fraud, mismanagement and corruption. The main priority is a “jobs program” for unions officials, teachers, administrators, contractors, and vendors.
    We need to cut the size, scope, and cost of government, that’s the solution.