National leaders, Illinois communities join education event to discuss opportunities for school improvement

Posted on April 09, 2018

SPRINGFIELD (April 6, 2018) — More than 150 attendees are expected for the Seventh Annual Legislator Forum: School Improvement from the Ground Up at 6 p.m. Wednesday, April 11 at the State House Inn in Springfield. The Legislator Forum will feature how Illinois communities are collaborating with their district and schools to raise achievement for all students and spur college and career readiness and success. The event arrives as Illinois implements a new plan under the federal Every Student Succeeds Act for providing supports to schools. 

The work of the Illinois 60 by 25 Network, including 13 communities from across the state, will be featured as a collective impact, cross-sector model toward improved student success. The efforts of business and community stakeholders in one of those communities, Rockford, have received national recognition for developing career academies in high schools. Rev. Dr. K. Edward Copeland, Founding Governing Board Chairman, Alignment Rockford, and Board Member, Advance Illinois, Anisha Grimmett, Executive Director, Alignment Rockford, and Dr. Ehren Jarrett, Rockford Public Schools superintendent will serve as panelists. The event’s keynote speaker is Dr. Nancy Zimpher, former Chancellor of the State University of New York, the nation’s largest comprehensive system of public higher education, and a highly respected leader in collective impact. Ginger Ostro, Executive Director, Advance Illinois, will provide welcome remarks and moderate a discussion among the panelists. 

Partners for the event include Advance Illinois, Center for the Study of Education Policy at Illinois State University, Chicago Urban League, East Side Aligned, Equity First Superintendents, Illinois 60 by 25 Network, Illinois Association of School Administrators, Illinois Board of Higher Education, Illinois Community College Board, Illinois Education Association, Illinois Manufacturers Association Education Foundation, Illinois PTA, Illinois Student Assistance Commission, Illinois State Board of Education, Latino Policy Forum, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC), National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Northern Illinois Regional P-20 Network, Ounce of Prevention Fund, Quad County Urban League, Real Learning for Real Life Coalition, Springfield Urban League, Stand for Children, Tri-County Urban League, United Way, University of Chicago Urban Education Institute. 

About Advance Illinois

Founded in 2008, Advance Illinois believes all kids deserve a quality education. We are an independent policy and advocacy organization that works toward a healthy public education system that prepares students to achieve success in college, career and civic life. We are committed to an aligned education system that strives for equity, stresses college and career readiness and completion, and supports the whole child from the earliest years through adulthood. To learn more, visit, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.