Making the most of 2017 Illinois Report Card data

By Melissa Figueira Policy Associate Several years ago, Advance Illinois helped spearhead an effort to revamp the way the Illinois Report Card displayed data about the state’s 2 million public school students. In 2013, the report cards got a much-needed makeover. Now, they are among the highest quality reports of their kind in the entire […]

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School funding model fixed, now what?

By Anna Schneider Communications Associate After inequitably funding schools for over 20 years, Illinois finally put politics aside, and made a historic move towards bettering the quality of education for 2.1 million kids. On August 31, 2017 Illinois instituted a new, more equitable way of funding schools — an evidence-based model that drives resources to […]

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Advance Illinois receives Game Changer of the Year award at industry summit

Thanks to our partners! #piesummit17 @IllinoisStand #e4echi @IllinoisASA @iasbo @ctbaonline @FundILFuture @TeachPlusChi #sb1_947 pic.twitter.com/8bVKQgXOXn — Advance Illinois (@advanceillinois) October 27, 2017 Advance Illinois received industry recognition last night for its five-year campaign toward school funding reform. The Policy Innovators in Education Network, which includes 77 organizations in 34 states, named Advance Illinois its Game Changer […]

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Thank you for putting kids first

Five years ago, Advance Illinois set out to fix our state’s broken school funding formula, the most inequitable in the country. Thank you to the partners who fought alongside us to put kids first. On Aug. 31, 2017, we finally celebrated success: The new school funding formula signed into law will drive resources to the […]

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Districts make way for KIDS

This article previously appeared in the Illinois Association of School Boards’ Illinois School Board Journal. By Melissa Figueira Policy Associate In the fall of 2017, following successful pilots in districts across the state, the Kindergarten Individual Development Survey, or KIDS, will be implemented in Illinois. So what exactly is KIDS and what does the statewide rollout […]

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Illinois enacts historic school funding reform

Illinois is on the verge of having a new school funding formula, thanks to the Senate’s passage of a compromise bill yesterday. SB1947 garnered a bipartisan supermajority of 38 votes in the Senate, and the bill will now be sent to Gov. Rauner, who has said he will sign it. The bill fixes the nation’s […]

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Urban Institute report shows Illinois’ school funding system is most regressive in the nation, has remained regressive since 1995

Yet another study shows that Illinois spends more money to educate wealthier students than it does to educate low-income students and that its school funding system is the most regressive in the nation. Urban Institute, one of the country’s leading research institutions, reports Illinois is one of the few states whose funding has remained regressive since 1995. […]

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KIDS and kindergarten transition: Updates from Early Education

By Alex Baptiste Data Analytics Associate Illinois is taking significant steps to reinvest in early childhood education. Last month, ISBE launched a new page for the Kindergarten Individual Development Survey (KIDS), an observational tool assessing Kindergarten readiness that will be implemented statewide this coming school year. The General Assembly passed a kindergarten transition bill (HJR […]

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Crain’s guest column: Fix the school funding formula and open schools this fall

July 11, 2017 — Advance Illinois Co-Chairs John Edwardson and Marin Gjaja wrote a guest column for Crain’s Chicago Business advocating for the Governor to sign Senate Bill 1 and end the uncertainty facing school districts. Here’s the full column: Last week, the General Assembly took the first step toward ending the financial uncertainty Illinois […]

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Tribune letter: Funding formula helps all students

June 8, 2017 — Advance Illinois Co-Chairs John Edwardson and Marin Gjaja wrote a letter to the Chicago Tribune in support of the passage of SB1, which reforms school funding in Illinois, and calling for Governor Rauner to sign the bill. Here’s the text of the letter: In response to the editorial “Don’t dare applaud […]

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