Advance Illinois Statement on FY22 State Budget

Posted on June 01, 2021

Contact:
Advance Illinois Communications
communications@advanceillinois.org

CHICAGO, IL – In the wake of a pandemic and with many competing priorities, we applaud the appropriation of $350 million for the Evidence-Based Funding formula. This is a direct investment in the next generation and in Illinois’ own future. As importantly, it honors the state’s commitment to continue investing in our schools with a goal of getting all districts to at least 90 percent adequate funding. Never has the need been greater. Never has it been more essential for schools and leaders to have long-term funding they can rely on to meet student needs. Thank you to our elected leaders for rising to this moment.  

The appropriation of state funds for EBF allows the state to use short-term federal funds as intended: to safely reopen schools for in-person learning and support students socially, emotionally and academically as they recover from the many ways in which COVID-19 has disrupted their development and learning. 

A successful recovery from the effects of the pandemic depends heavily on critical investments across the education continuum. Accordingly, we also applaud increases to MAP funding – always important to providing equitable access to higher education, especially now. With that said, we know that children need support starting at birth, including investments in such vital programs as the Early Childhood Block Grant, Child Care Assistance Program and Early Intervention. In the teeth of greater need for support and access, we are disappointed to see cuts and flat-funding in early childhood.  

Given the ongoing need to strengthen and diversify the pipeline for teachers, social workers and other school personnel, we are heartened to see significant investments of federal funds in state-level mentoring, induction and other pipeline strategies, even as we are disappointed not to see increases to Minority Teachers of Illinois Scholarship. 

Budgets reflect priorities. This budget makes clear that the General Assembly prioritizes investments in Illinois students, even as it serves as a reminder that there is much work ahead to ensure the entire education continuum – from birth through college – is properly funded so all Illinois students are able to receive the quality education they deserve. 

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About Advance Illinois
Advance Illinois is an independent policy and advocacy organization working toward a healthy public education system that enables all students to achieve success in college, career and civic life. Since its founding in 2008, Advance Illinois has become a nationally recognized thought leader in education policy advocacy. To learn more, visit advanceillinois.org.