Illinois Advocates Push for Continued Progress on Funding Equity
June 27, 2019

Leaders from multiple Illinois PIE Network member organizations are working to tackle funding reform from all angles.

Teach Plus Illinois Video Brings Funding Formula to Life

In a new video, Teach Plus Illinois Policy Fellows share how Illinois’ 2017 evidence-based funding formula is helping to improve equity-focused funding in schools across the state.

The video features examples of how schools and students have benefited from changes to the funding formula, including the capability to implement increased access to technology, improved school facilities, and a full day kindergarten curriculum.

“I’ve really learned that equity in funding is one of the ways that we can pull levers to create successful outcomes for students.”

You can also explore 11 additional stories from school districts around the state, explaining what they were able to do with the new funding. According to Teach Plus, “though the new funding formula has helped school districts immensely, the work is not done…it will take nearly 20 years to fully fund this formula.” Learn more here.

Stand for Children Illinois Shines Light on Teacher Pensions

Recent resources from Stand for Children Illinois also highlight the important progress made thanks to the funding formula, while calling attention to “the other great inequity in school funding: how employer costs for teacher pensions are handled.” As Stand Illinois explains, “school districts that are better off and have greater local property wealth benefit from significantly more State dollars [for pension costs] than poorer districts do.”

Stand Illinois’ Equity Boost proposal aims to use the new school funding formula to address the inequity of payment of teacher pension costs and bring the state closer to fully funding education.

“The Equity Boost is a win-win solution.”

Benefits from the Equity Boost plan include:

  • It provides predictability and stability for school districts that have been fearing a sudden pension cost shift.
  • Amount added to the hold harmless Base Funding Minimum for pensions will stretch further as pension normal costs go down.
  • It protects teacher pensions and directs more State dollars to the neediest districts.
  • The State will fully fund education sooner.

Find additional resources on the Equity Boost here, including a fact sheet and methodology. Learn more about Illinois’ progress toward adequate funding through this recent update from Advance Illinois.

Interested in upcoming opportunities to learn more about pension reform? Reach out to Eric.


Christina Dobratz

Christina is PIE Network's Manager, Communications & Policy  


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