The Illinois Senate on Tuesday passed a school funding plan that revamps the way schools are funded, but also implements a temporary voucher program and allows districts to ask for fewer physical education classes and hire outside companies for drivers education classes.
The bill passed on a 38-13 vote. It will now go to the desk of Gov. Bruce Rauner for his approval. The bill struggled a bit more in the House the night before — first failing to pass, prompting Representatives to vote on an override of Rauner’s amendatory veto of the original school funding proposal of Senate Bill 1, a vote which also failed. And, then finally passed upon a reconsideration.
IEA President Kathi Griffin urged Rauner not to sign the bill because it takes money away from public education and gives it to wealthy tax donors through a personal tax break in the same bill that finally provides fair funding to Illinois schools — and there is no funding set aside for this voucher program.
“In addition, provisions in this bill that allow districts to outsource drivers education programs and cut back physical education classes hurt students and their families,” Griffin said. “The IEA will be working to educate communities and families on how to minimize the negative impact these provisions could have on their communities.”