Leading News Archives April 2017

April 28, 2017
Here are the afternoon updates to two of this morning's articles:

Judge puts CPS discrimination lawsuit on life support
Sam Charles and Fran Spielman, Chicago Sun-Times, April 28

Byrd-Bennett, ex-CPS chief, given 4 1/2 years
for massive bribery scandal
Jason Meisner and Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 28

In today’s Leading News, it’s a “critical” day for Chicago Public Schools, as a Cook County judge is expected to rule on the district’s education funding lawsuit. Additionally, former CPS CEO will be sentenced today in a bribery case. Governor Bruce Rauner meet with Speaker Michael Madigan yesterday, a “hopeful sign” for a state budget agreement. Finally in the news, the Rockford Register Star reports on Title I reform moving forward.

Morning Spin: What's at stake in Friday rulings
on CPS' school funding lawsuit
Chicago Tribune, April 28

Rahm likely will have to rescue CPS,
no matter how judge rules
Fran Spielman, Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, April 27

Ex-CPS chief Barbara Byrd-Bennett to be sentenced Friday
in bribery case
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 28

Rauner’s office reports hopeful sign
after meeting with Madigan
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, Springfield

Illinois Title 1 reform for schools inches forward
Corina Curry, Rockford Register Star, April 1

April 27, 2017
In today’s Leading News, guessing over funding, and luck of the draw to win a school board spot. A new curriculum is approved in Princeton ESD 115. Finally in the news, as CPS schedules its next school year, its teachers union will rally for school funding on May 1.

State budget stalemate leaves Lake County schools
'just guessing' over funding
Emily K. Coleman, Lake County News-Sun, April 26

Who’s the next Rockford School Board member? Pick a card
Corina Curry, Rockford Register Star, April 25

A new curriculum is recommended at PES
Dave Cook,  Bureau County Republican, April 25

CPS proposes school year dates for 2017-18
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 24

CTU plans May Day rally calling for more school funding
Mitchell Armentrout, Chicago Sun-Times, April 26

April 25, 2017
In today’s Leading News, a coin toss will decide a school board seat in Rockford SD 205. Illinois public school superintendents unite in a call for a state budget, noting some school districts may not be able to open. Finally, in a related matter in the news, leave it to an elementary school student to ask the tough question.

Coin toss to determine outcome of Rockford School Board race
Corina Curry, Rockford Register Star, April 24

Unit 40 superintendent joins call to pass state budget
Dawn Schabbing, Daily News, Effingham, April 24

OHS seeks state budget action
Charles Stanley, Ottawa Times, April 24

Some Schools May Not Open Next Year If There’s No State Budget
Nancy Harty, CBS2, Chicago, April 24

‘Why are we so bad with money?’ New Baden student asks governor
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, April 22

April 24, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the Mundelein High School board has voted to eliminate class rankings. Two southern Illinois districts were recently moved off of the state’s financial watch list. In the governor’s first visit of his statewide “learning tour,” Maine East students showcased the unique educational programs offered at the school. DeKalb County schools continue to wait on special education and transportation funding from the state. Finally in the news, some educators are turning a large profit by selling lesson plans online to other teachers around the world.

Rick Kambic, Pioneer Press/Mulndelein News, April 19 
Christopher Heimerman, DeKalb Daily Chronicle, April 20

Teachers cash in, big time, by putting lessons up for sale 
Carolyn Thompson/AP, The Telegraph-Herald, Dubuque, Iowa, April 16

April 21, 2017
In today’s Leading News, renewed concerns for student safety, as police continue to investigate a threat at a Skokie SD 73.5 middle school, and officials are investigating incidences at middle schools in Oak Park ESD 97. A Cook County judge will rule next week on CPS’s school funding lawsuit against the state. Students in Sangamon Valley CUSD 9 experience science in a new lab. Finally in the news, a look at how states are tracking student growth under ESSA.

Investigation continues over Skokie middle school students' plan
to commit shooting, police say
Mike Isaacs, Pioneer Press/Skokie Review, April 20

Officials investigate after students bring weapons
to Oak Park middle schools
Steve Schering, Pioneer Press/Oak Park News, April 19

Judge to rule April 28 on CPS’ lawsuit against Rauner, ISBE
Lauren FitzPatrick and Fran Spielman, Chicago Sun-Times, April 19

New science lab at Sangamon Valley replaces unused classroom
Valerie Wells, Decatur Herald & Review, April 12

Beyond test scores, here are new ways states
are tracking school success
Maria Danilova, AP/PBS News hour, April 17

April 20, 2017
In today’s Leading News, some school districts will continue to offer the ACT even as the state moves to the SAT. The village of Milan works to improve roadway safety near a Rock Island/Milan SD 41 elementary school. In Galesburg, SD 205 superintendent candidates meet with the community. Based on survey results, New Trier THSD 203 will change up its headline-making seminar on race relations. Finally in the news, students in Cairo SD 1 write about their housing crisis.

As state switches to SAT exam,
some districts also paying to offer ACT
Diane Rado, Chicago Tribune, April 17

Milan removes passing zone over concerns about student safety
Kelly Haertjens, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, April 17

District 205 supt. search forum beneficial
Gary Tomlin, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, April 19

New Trier may change racial education options,
return seminar day to previous format
Kathy Routliffe, Pioneer Press/Winnetka News, April 19

'Dear Ben Carson...' Cairo sixth-grade students
ask HUD secretary to save their school, community
Molly Parker, The Southern Illinoisan, April 19

April 19, 2017
In today’s Leading News, a hearing on CPS’s school funding lawsuit against the state proceeds today. The State Journal-Register and IASA report on voters favoring school funding proposals. Naperville high school students talk about student anxiety and the pressure to perform. A study shows elementary students are reading better now than 10 years ago.  Finally in the news, the Putnam County Record looks at a term-limit proposal for school board members and community college board members, now in the Rules Committee of the Illinois House.

Judge set to hear arguments on CPS lawsuit
over state education funding
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 1

Illinois voters more sympathetic to school funding issues
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, April 15

'It was the worst semester of my life':
Naperville students confide about anxiety, academic pressure
Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, April 14

Kids are better readers than they were more than a decade ago
Sean Rossman, USA Today, April 13

Term limits for school board members?
Legislation proposal would limit school board members to two terms
Dave Cook, Putnam County Record, April 18

April 18, 2017
In today’s Leading News, this week the U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled hear a long-delayed case regarding using public money to aid religious institutions. Alton CUSD 11 schools inform parents and students about restorative justice. Calumet City SD 155 increases lunch prices by ten cents. Metro East counties look past county sales tax referendum tries. Finally in the news, seven superintendents from west central Illinois participate in a funding reform town hall.

Supreme Court, with Gorsuch, set to hear church-state case
Associated Press, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, April 17

Alton Middle School hosts 1st restorative justice night
with students, parents
Brittany Johnson, Alton Telegraph, April 15

D.155 hikes school lunch price a dime
Paul Czapkowicz, Northwest Indiana Times, April 13

Proposed sales tax increases for school repairs failed. Now what?
Lexi Cortes and Elizabeth Donald, Belleville News-Democrat, April 16

School superintendents back education funding reform bill
Matt Dutton, Herald-Whig, Quincy, April 18

April 17, 2017
In today’s Leading News, ISBE released its Annual Financial Profiles of school districts across the state. A CPS retirement incentive fails to get enough takers. Lake County schools consider a future with less federal funding. Finally in the news, Galesburg CUSD 205 eliminates a GPA requirement for student extracurricular participation.

Many state schools incur debt to cover lack of state funding
The Daily Republican, Marion, April 14

Will County schools show strong financial health
Felix Sarver, Joliet Herald-News, April 13

CPS retirement incentive plan fails
to draw desired number of participants
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 13

Lake County school officials express need for dollars
on Trump's chopping block
Emily K. Coleman, Lake County News-Sun, April 7

District 205 axes athletic GPA requirement
Rebecca Susmarski, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, April 12

April 13, 2017
In today’s Leading News, there’s another school funding reform plan on the table, and NPR Illinois’ Education Desk tries to makes sense -- or soup -- out of the reform situation. Champaign CUSD 4 begins implementing plans for its facilities referendum bond funds. “What’s going on?” Decatur SD 90 carries out conversations on race. Finally in the news, proposals aimed at ending “lunch shaming” are making headlines.

Another school funding plan proposed
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, Springfield, April 12

Cooking Up A New School Funding Plan
Dusty Rhodes, Education Desk/NPR Illinois, April 12

Champaign school board begins talks with 7 firms for referendum work
Nicole Lafond, News-Gazette, Champaign, April 11

Discussion examines race relations in Decatur
Chris Lusvardi, Decatur Herald & Review, April 6

Legislation sparks discussion over school "lunch shaming"
Brandon Merano, WSIL-TV, April 11

April 12, 2017
In today’s Leading News, read about another in a series of crises in stricken Cairo, Ill., as a federal housing program is closing two failing developments, impacting half of Cairo SD 1’s students. Springfield SD 186 finds elevated lead levels in the drinking water at some schools. School districts caution parents against  their students taking school days off for vacations. The new board of education at Batavia PSD 101 strives to put students first. Finally in the news, U.S. education secretary Betsy DeVos oplans to change how student loan services collect debt, overriding the previous administration’s assistance to borrowers.

In heated meeting,
HUD tells Cairo public housing residents they have to move
Molly Parker, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, April 10

Testing turns up elevated lead levels in some Springfield schools
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, April 10

Schools crack down on student absences for vacations
Vikki Ortiz Healy, Chicago Tribune, April 11

Newly elected Batavia School Board members
will look to put students first
Renee Tomell, Kane County Chronicle, April 7

DeVos Undoes Obama Student Loan Protections
Shahien Nasiripour, Bloomberg News, April 11

April 11, 2017
In today’s Leading News, citing costs, Elgin-based School District U-46 will seek an exemption to the state’s new breakfast mandate. Naperville CUSD 203 projects a need for new staff. Edwardsville SD 7 moves forward with its plans after a successful referendum. Galesburg SD 205 considers the post-election timing of its superintendent-hiring decision. Finally in the news, meet the 18-year-old elected to the Bannockburn SD 106 school board.

U-46 considers opting out of serving breakfast after school starts
Madhu Krishnamurthy, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 5

D203 to add 37 new staffers, including for special education
Alicia Fabbre, Naperville Sun, April 8

Andre prepares to move forward
Superintendent grateful for voter support
Bill Tucker, Edwardsville Intelligencer, April 10

D205 board interviews experienced supt. candidates
Rebecca Susmarski, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, April 9

Barely 18 and elected to a Lake County school board
Bob Susnjara, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 8


April 10, 2017
In today’s Leading News, two Henry-county school district communities voted against a consolidation. Prosecutors recommend a 7.5-year sentence for former CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett, who has pleaded guilty to a fraud charge. Decatur SD 90’s new board of education aims for unity after a difficult year. Officials try improve a communication problem within Streator High School. Finally in the news, Belleville SD 201 will bring its transportation services in-house.

AlWood, Cambridge voters nix merger
Mike Landis and Sherrie Taylor, Galesburg Register-Mail, April 4

Prosecutors seek 7 1/2-year prison term
for ex-CPS head Barbara Byrd-Bennett
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, April 1

New Decatur school board members seek unity
Valerie Wells, Decatur Herald & Review, April 8

School: Police can't communicate inside
David Giuliani, Ottawa Times, April 7

Belleville school district taking over bus services for area students
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, April 4


April 7, 2017
In today’s Leading News, catching up on a busy news week, the president denounced Chicago and other big-city public schools, saying, “it’s so sad to see what’s coming.” Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel offers a plan that would require a post-secondary plan before high school graduation. Chicago Teachers Union plans a day of action instead of a one-day strike on May 1. Learn why the Township HSD 211 school board election is considered a school policy win for transgender students. Finally in the news, ten school districts in Illinois are part of a pilot program that will change how high schools prepare students for college and careers.

President Donald Trump takes aim at Chicago schools
Lynn Sweet, Fran Spielman and Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, April 4

CPS To Set New Graduation Requirement: Acceptance Letter
WBBM/CBS2, Chicago, April 5

CTU leaders not recommending strike on May 1, ‘action’ instead
Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, April 4

Experts: Illinois school election affirms transgender policy
Sophia Tareen, AP/Chicago Tribune, April 5

Peoria, Williamsfield districts in pilot program
to make high school relevant
Pam Adams, Peoria Journal-Star, April 3

RTHS selected to take part in competency-based learning pilot program
Zack Carpenter, Rantoul Press, April 4

Round Lake High part of state push to better prepare graduates
Bob Susnjara, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 4


April 6, 2017
In today’s Leading news, read reaction to the lawsuit, declaring the state funding formula unconstitutional, that several rural school districts have filed against the state of Illinois. Also in the news, the Daily Herald looks at Illinois’ plan to comply with the Every Student Succeeds Act.

Rural School Districts File Suit Against Rauner
Dusty Rhodes, Education Desk, NPR Illinois/WUIS, April 5

Chillicothe, other districts take state to court over school funding
Pam Adams, Peoria Journal-Star, April 5

Illinois school districts with low-income students sue state leaders
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, April 5

Downstate schools sue Gov. Bruce Rauner over funding
Monique Garcia and Haley BeMiller, Chicago Tribune, April 5

State education board develops new accountability plan for schools
Madhu Krishnamurthy, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 5

April 5, 2017
In a late addendum to today's Leading News, several school districts today joined a lawsuit claiming the state's school funding formula is unconstitutional.

School districts sue Illinois
for failing to adequately fund public education 
Kristen Taketa, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 5

In today’s Leading News, we’ll be posting a summary of election information to the blog later, but here are some outcomes to stories previously in the headlines. Metro East counties voted against the county school facilities sales tax. Taylorville CUSD 3 saw its tax referendum pass. Election changes the Lincoln-Way THSD 210 board after a difficult year. Wheaton Warrenville CUSD 200 saw a $132 million bond referendum defeated.  Finally in the news, in a race that drew national attention, Palatine-based Township HSD 211 voters supported school board candidates who determined the district’s transgender student policy.

School sales tax proposals fail in Madison and St. Clair counties
Doug Moore, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, April 4

Taylorville Tax Referendum Passes
Matthew Wikos, Fox Illinois, April 4

Lincoln-Way 210 voters have their say following school closure
Susan DeMar Lafferty, Daily Southtown, Chicago and suburbs, April 4

Wheaton Warrenville District 200's $132M request defeated
Katlyn Smith, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 5

Attempt to Overturn School Board's Transgender Policy Fails
AP/U.S. News and World Report, April 5

April 4, 2017
In today’s Leading News, read more about how some, but not all, units of government have more offices open than candidates willing to fill them in today’s consolidated election. Illinois still employs the private lottery company it fired two years ago. Finally in the news, Chester CUSD 139 seeks to recover state funding lost when the district and community honored a fallen police officer.

Chicago suburbs struggle finding candidates for elections
AP/State Journal-Register, Springfield, April 3

Kerry Lester, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 4

Sara Burnett, AP/The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, March 28

K. Janis Esch, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, April 3

April 3, 2017
In today’s Leading News, lessons in reporting hate speech may be coming to Illinois schools. Peoria Public Schools considers changing requirements and eliminating class rank. New information shows a charter provider sent recruiting letters to other charters. Some school boards and other local governing units lack candidates. Finally in the news, a look at Metro East referendum issues.

Illinois students will learn how to report hate speech on social media
Brian Robbins, State Journal-Register, Springfield, March 30

Noble tried to poach from other charter schools, not just CPS
Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, March 30

PPS considers new graduation requirements, no more class ranks
Pam Adams, Journal Star, Peoria, March 19

Are there enough candidates to do the job in your town?
Katlyn Smith and Jake Griffin, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, April 3

Metro East, St. Louis County school districts seek funding help
in Tuesday’s election
Ryan Delaney, St. Louis Public Radio, April 2



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The links to articles posted here are selected daily from news sources across Illinois, provided as a service to our membership. These links go directly to the original source (print, broadcast, or online media) that originated the article. The purpose of sharing these links is to give readers of this blog a wider perspective on state and local issues impacting public education. IASB neither endorses nor verifies the content.

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