Tuesday, May 10, 2016 03:10 PM
SPRINGFIELD — State Senator Pat McGuire (D-Joliet) joined members of the Senate Downstate Caucus on Tuesday in support of a measure that more equitably funds Illinois’ public schools.
The Downstate Caucus held a press conference to brief reporters about Senate Bill 231, sponsored by State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), which changes a nearly 20-year-old formula for how the state distributes its funding for K-12 education. A key provision of SB 231 shifts state money away from wealthier school districts — whose high property values fund a high level of per-pupil spending — to those districts with a higher proportion of low-income students.
“In Illinois, the quality of a child's education too often depends on the child's ZIP code. Senator Manar's measure would correct this,” McGuire said. “I urge the governor to re-think his opposition to SB 231. To bring back Illinois, we need to bring every child's education up to world-class level. That's morally right, economically necessary, and SB 231 is the conscientious way to do it."
Under SB 231, no district would receive less state money from 2015 levels, and many areas will see that 100 percent of its students get an increase in funding.
“Kids in Illinois cities hit hard by factories closing in the 1980s and ever since badly need a boost,” McGuire said. “This legislation helps students in Joliet, Chicago Heights, Elgin, Rockford… SB 231 will help transform Illinois’ Rust Belt into the asset we need it to be.”
SB 231 recently passed a key Senate committee and will be debated on the floor later this week.
Sen. Pat McGuire
Years served: 2012 - Present
Committee assignments: Environment and Conservation; Appropriations II; Higher Education (Chairperson); Revenue; Transportation; Committee of the Whole; State Government & Veterans Affairs (Vice-Chairperson).
Biography: Former teacher, school board member, Will County treasurer and Braidwood City Clerk; attended Joliet Catholic schools from first grade through college; married (Lora) with one daughter (Molly).