Illinois’ Grand Bargain will include a major attack on Special Education. Nobody is reporting this. Take action now.

7071165626-John Cullerton 7

Senate President John Cullerton’s Grand Bargain with the Repubs includes an attack on special ed.

From Bev Johns.

In a speech on Monday, Senate President John Cullerton stated that school funding reform would be part of his Grand Bargain of 13 bills on the State Budget, increasing taxes, etc. that he wanted the State Senate to vote on this week.

“The Senate President also said lawmakers will be briefed on a new school funding formula plan that will be a part of this package.”

Senate Bill 1 is now an empty shell bill that will be amended to include a new school funding formula plan.

What would it do to Special Education in Illinois?

Base special ed funding on a fixed number of general education students (no matter how many students with IEPs are in a school district).

Even worse, this is just funding. It is not based on the number of special ed teachers. A school district could employ any number of special ed teachers and still receive exactly the same amount of money.

Why? On January 17, State Senator Andy Manar stated to the Commission that school districts had “drastic overidentification” of students for special education.

Read it for yourself.   Go to –
https://www.isbe.net/Pages/Illinois

Look at evidence-based funding formula (2/2/17) where you can read the 449 page draft bill (Draft Language) and by clicking on the next two lines, you can get a detailed accounting of how that 449 page bill would affect one anonymous school district (Preliminary Mechanism Worksheets), and its effect on 12 anonymous school districts (Results Summary).

By clicking on 2017 you can listen to each 3 hour meeting of the Commission (Audio and Webinar).

ACTION: Immediately contact your Illinois state senator, asking them to:

Please keep dedicated state tate funding for special education teachers who are critical to the specialized teaching needed by students with disabilities. In the coming Amendment to Senate Bill 1, please keep Special Education Personnel Reimbursement. Please reject the proposal in the draft amendment to SB 1 that would base funding for special education on a fixed number of general education students.

TELEPHONE NUMBERS FOR YOUR STATE SENATOR –
https://ieanea.org/legislative/contact-your-legislators/

2 Replies to “Illinois’ Grand Bargain will include a major attack on Special Education. Nobody is reporting this. Take action now.”

  1. Hi Fred, Thanks always for the clear info you provide and your voice! Clicking on IEA link here leads to Federal senate/congressional reps. This (awful) bill affecting spending for special ed is for Illinois. Is there another link for Illinois legislative reps? Pretty sure Currie is one of mine…. Thanks! Barbara

    Dr. Barbara Randolph Columbia College Chicago brandolph@colum.edu ________________________________

    1. Thanks Barbara. If you enter your location in the boxes it will also give you your state representative and state senator.

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