School funding may finally be fixed

Just needs Rauner's signature

ILLINOIS (WCIA) -- The state is just one step away from finally passing a new school funding formula.

The Senate passed a school funding bill Tuesday. Now, it's in Governor Rauner's hands. He has pledged to sign it. 

Monday, Rauner said in a statement, he would take swift action, meaning, once it reaches his desk, he will sign it to take a big leap toward reversing the state's stigma of being the worst in the nation for school funding.

The vote needed 36 Senators and it got 38. Some Democrats did not support the private school voucher portion, which was put in last minute to get bipartisan votes on the historical moment.

Now, more than two million school children will get the same treatment despite their zip code when it comes to funding their school. Lawmakers say the compromise can pave the way to, hopefully, more bipartisanship down the road.

Comptroller Susana Mendoza also says she's ready to release more than a half-billion dollars to schools which already missed two general state aid payments.

As early as Wednesday, it's possible the school funding bill will become law.

Other portions of the bill give districts more control. One lets them decide if they want to reduce PE classes to three days a week instead of five. Another gives schools the choice to hire a private driver's education company.

Lawmakers say both let schools save money.


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