All they want is for the legislature and governor to allocate what they’re supposed to. Members of the Illinois State Board of Education Thursday are expected to follow the superintendent’s recommendations and ask for a nearly $10.8 billion budget, including the mandated per-pupil allocation of $6,119. That’s as opposed to pro-rating to, in the case of the current fiscal year, 89 percent.
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“We want them to do what is in the state statute,” says ISBE Chairman Gery Chico. “Now, if the legislature chose to change the statute and reduce (the per-pupil level), that’s their prerogative. We’re a nation of laws; we follow the law. But, in following the law, the legislature set $6,119 as the foundation level, and that’s the level we seek to hit.”
Superintendent Chris Koch points out things are getting worse. “We’re expecting at the end of this fiscal year that over 10 percent of our districts are going to have less than 100 days’ (worth) of cash on hand.”