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Senate to consider clean K-12 funding plan

edfund 062816

 

The Senate will take up a new plan on Wednesday to fund K-12 education, with no school district getting less money than they received last year.

The measure is a clean funding plan – what the governor said he wants – that will increase preschool through 12th grade funding and school poverty grants to levels long recommended by the state. The Senate will debate the measure as the General Assembly returns to Springfield tomorrow.

This bill provides funding for the full 2017 fiscal year to ensure schools open on time and with the means to operate for the entire school year.

edfund 062816 pdfSenate Bill 2054 would increase General State Aid to schools by $760 million and include grants to school districts based on need. It also includes a $75 million increase to Early Childhood Education in keeping with Gov. Bruce Rauner’s proposed budget. This is a full fiscal year education budget.

This proposal will ensure schools will open on time and is considered to be an improvement on the existing education budget the governor signed last year. It represents a commitment to K-12 education as a priority for the Senate Democrats and what should be a bipartisan priority for all state lawmakers and the governor.

Senate Democrats also plan to debate components of a stop-gap budget on Wednesday that would fund much of the remaining state government functions. The proposals would fund higher education, including MAP grants for low-income students and critical road construction projects that could stop later this week without state action.