WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Quinn, Rauner Agree: No To Education Funding Plan

Oct 14, 2014
Originally published on October 13, 2014 8:22 am

Both of the major party candidates for governor say Illinois should put more money into education. But neither are ready to embrace a controversial plan that would change how state money is distributed to schools.

There's been an uproar in some Chicago suburbs lately, over a proposal that's already passed the Illinois Senate. Under it, many districts there would see cuts in state funding, because they're in wealthier areas.

The proposal is meant to level out how much money schools have to operate. Schools where poverty is high and property values are low would get more state funding, often, at the expense of wealthier districts.

Supporters say the change is fair.

But Gov. Pat Quinn isn't on board.

"I do not favor reducing funding in a particular school district to its disadvantage," he said at a debate last week in Peoria.

Neither is Republican businessman Bruce Rauner, though he does say Illinois needs a new education funding formula.

"Education is the most important thing we do together as a community. There's nothing more important," Rauner said.

Rauner says Illinois should be spending more on education, but hasn’t explained how that fits with his call to lower the income tax rate.

How much Illinois spends on schools overall is a different debate from how Illinois divvies up its limited pot of education money.

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