Leading News Archives January 2017

January 31, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the Tribune tallies the costs of the ongoing Illinois budget stalemate. Rochester CUSD 3a challenges portions of a proposed TIF district in the village. Belleville SD 118 replaces its annual science fair. Urbana SD 116 considers its options for building redesign. Finally in the news, solar power is in the works for Waukegan SD 60.

Interest payments on Illinois' unpaid bills add
to vast cost of budget impasse
Monique Garcia, Chicago Tribune, January 29

Rochester School District opposes creation of TIF
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 28

Here’s why Belleville District 118 will no longer have a science fair
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, January 29

Facilities panel: Hire firm to help redesign Urbana middle, high campus
Nicole Lafond, News-Gazette, Champaign, January 25

Waukegan District 60 moves forward with solar farm plan
at Yeoman Creek landfill
Emily K. Coleman, Lake County News-Sun, January 26

January 30, 2017
In today’s Leading News, another look at reaction from around the state to Illinois new lead testing law, which is directed at daycare centers and elementary schools. Evanston THSD 202 responds to a student walkout. Finally in the news, a Vermillion County survey raises concerns about bullying and suicide.

After Southern Illinois schools test their drinking water for lead,
what's next?
Molly Parker, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, January 25

Lead testing joins long list
of unfunded mandates imposed on Illinois schools
Matt Dutton, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 21

Dixon High water tests positive for lead
Christopher Heimerman, Sauk Valley News, Sterling, January 27

Water test for schools worth cost, Springfield superintendent says
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 22

Evanston high school superintendent comments
on students' walkout, protest
Genevieve Bookwalter, Pioneer Press/Evanston Review, January 26

Survey: Teen suicide a critical concern
Mary Wicoff, Commercial-News, Danville, January 27

January 27, 2017
In today’s Leading News, after adjourning without a budget plan, Senate leaders expect a budget vote in February. Meanwhile Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan has filed to stop state employee pay unless a spending plan is approved. Also meanwhile, ISBE finalized its budget request. The Quincy SD 72 school board plans a meeting to ratify the contract that was recently agreed to, averting a strike. Finally in the news, Metro East officials discuss referenda that include county school facilities sales taxes.

Cullerton: Be ready for 'grand bargain' vote during week of Feb. 7
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, January 26

Absent budget, Lisa Madigan seeks to stop state workers’ pay
Tina Sfondeles, Chicago Sun-Times, January 27

ISBE finalizes budget request, including 3.45 percent increase
Alton Telegraph, January 25

School Board plans special meeting to ratify union contract
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 25

These metro-east leaders want your taxes to rise. Here’s why. 
Joseph Bustos, Belleville News-Democrat, January 25

January 26, 2017
In today’s Leading News, reaction to Governor Bruce Rauner’s State of the State address. The Sun-Times reports on a charter school’s operations becoming an international issue. St. Charles SD 303 presents results from its community survey. Finally in today’s news: piglets.

Rauner offers some support for budget 'bargain'
Tom Kacich, Champaign News-Gazette, January 26

Rauner and Democrats clash over State of the State
Rick Pearson and Monique Garcia, Chicago Tribune, January 25

Lawyers for Turkey call for probe of Chicago charter school
Dan Mihalopoulos, Chicago Sun-Times, January 24

Survey shows record District 303 satisfaction, but middle schools lag
James Fuller, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 18

This Little Piggy: Streator High partners with farmers to birth piglets
Jerrilyn Zavada, Ottawa Times, January 23

January 25, 2017
In today’s Leading News, Lincoln-Way CHSD 210 adopts a five-year strategic plan. East Moline SD 37 teachers indicate intent to strike as discussions continue. A county school facilities sales tax will be on the April ballot in Madison County. Finally in the news, media cover school district and community reaction to social media posts after last week’s national political events.

Susan DeMar Lafferty, Daily Southtown, Chicago and suburbs, January 24

Sarah Hayden, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, January 24

Elizabeth Donald, Belleville News-Democrat, January 24

Jennifer Johnson, Pioneer Press/Park Ridge Herald-Advocate, January 24

Jonathan Turner, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, January 24

January 24, 2017
In today’s Leading News, Galesburg SD 205 will determine what cuts to make in its budget. Citizens of Bushnell-Prairie City CUSD 170 will vote on eliminating location-based candidacy rules. CPS will revise its high school application process. Arlington Heights SD 25 considers full-day kindergarten. Metro-East schools push for more funding. Finally in the news, social and emotional health are part of the conversation, and the curriculum, at Naperville CUSD 203.

Gary Tomlin. The Register-Mail, Galesburg, January 22

Lainie Steelman, McDonough County Voice, January 20

Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, January 24

Karen Ann Cullotta, Pioneer Press/Arlington Heights Post, January 20

Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, January 20

January 23, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the Illinois Supreme Court decided an Open Meetings Act dispute in favor of Springfield SD 186. The East Moline SD 37 teachers union considers its intent to strike vote today. Illinois teacher pensions and unfunded liability re-entered the news last week. Finally in the news, the week ahead brings Governor Bruce Rauner’s annual address and the Senate’s work on the state’s budget impasse.

Illinois Supreme Court sides with Springfield School District
in open meetings dispute
State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 20

EM teachers to take 'intent to strike' vote today
Sarah Hayden, Quad Cities Dispatch Argus, January 22

Education Desk: Biss Brings Pensions Into Ed Funding Debate
Dusty Rhodes, WCBU/Peoria Public Radio, January 19

Illinois teachers’ pension system faces $71.4 billion unfunded liability
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, January 20

Morning Spin: Big week at Capitol
with Rauner speech, Senate budget votes
Chicago Tribune, January 23 

January 20, 2017
In today’s Leading news, Quincy SD 172 teachers and support staff have voted to accept a one-year contract proposal.  Aurora East USD 131 voted to deny a charter school application. Governor Bruce Rauner’s budget advisors say the Senate’s “grand plan” won’t eliminate the deficit. Education leaders downstate weigh in on the nominee for U.S. Secretary of Education. Finally in the news, teachers and volunteers bring school to hospitalized children.

Quincy Federation ratifies one-year contract
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 20

East Aurora board denies charter school proposal
Sarah Freishtat, Aurora Beacon-News, January 11

Rauner budget office says Senate plan won't erase deficit
John O'Connor, AP/State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 18

Local educators skeptical of school choice,
DeVos as Secretary of Education
Isaac Smith, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, January 19

Teachers help hospitalized kids keep up in school
Laura Nightengale, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 15

January 19, 2017
In today’s Leading News, read about IARSS’s study on teacher absences, and also about how some districts are working to find substitute teachers. Norovirus was confirmed as the cause of the outbreak of illness that closed a school in St. Charles CUSD 303. Furlough days are on the way for CPS staff. Finally in the news, LeRoy CUSD 2 seeks a new partnership with its community.

Report: Illinois Schools Face 16,500 Teacher Absences Each Week
Matt Masterson, WTTW, Chicago, January 17

Districts getting more aggressive in recruiting substitute teachers
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 11

Norovirus confirmed in St. Charles East High School outbreak
Rafael Guerrero, Elgin Courier-News, January 17

Mayor defends CPS furloughs as CTU joins school-cuts protests
Lauren FitzPatrick and Fran Spielman, Chicago Sun-Times, January 18

LeRoy School Board reaching out to city for promotion partnership
Jerry Nowicky, LeRoy/Farmer City Press, January 13


January 18, 2017
In today’s Leading news, will the “grand bargain” on the Illinois budget impact school funding reform? Some school districts are a step ahead of Illinois’ new lead testing law, impacting daycares and elementary schools. East Moline SD 37 has a contract mediation session scheduled for Friday. Finally in the news, Governor Bruce Rauner plans a “learning tour” of Illinois schools.

‘Grand bargain' on Illinois budget could be key
to school funding reform, lawmakers say
Dan Petrella, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, January 17

Illinois Senate vows swift action on ambitious budget plan
John O’Connor, AP/Alton Telegraph, January 15

Illinois now requires schools to test for lead.
Some local schools might already comply.
Kelsey Landis, Belleville News-Democrat, January 16

East Moline teachers plan one more day of pickets
Sarah Hayden, Quad Cities Dispatch-Argus, January 17

Rauner to embark on learning tour
Brittany Johnson, Alton Telegraph, January 13


January 17, 2017
In today’s Leading News, a new law requires that elementary schools test drinking water sources for lead and give parental notification of results.  St. Charles CUSD 303 looks at a borrowing plan. A Moody’s Investors report indicates a tax hike is the solution for CPS’s financial crisis. Effingham County considers a county school facilities sales tax. Finally in the news, Quincy SD 172 is in session today after the district and teachers agreed to a proposal to take to the teachers union for a vote.

Lead testing for schools, day cares signed into law
Sophia Tareen, AP/State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 16

How St. Charles District 303 will decide
 if it really needs to borrow $20M
James Fuller, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 13

$400M property tax increase could save CPS finances: Moody’s
Sam Charles, Chicago Sun-Times, January 12

Sales Tax Decision
Bill Grimes And Dawn Schabbing, Effingham Daily News, January 14

UPDATE: Strike delayed, students to attend school Tuesday
Matt Dutton, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 14

January 13, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the issue of free appropriate public education for children with disabilities is before the U.S. Supreme Court. Naperville SD 203 considers weighing in on the nominee for U.S. Secretary of Education. Quincy SD 172 faces a teachers strike. Kankakee SD 111 rejects a proposal to “bail out” the Kankakee Park District. Metro-East school districts announced closures last night in anticipation of the icy winter weather that began Friday morning. Finally in the news, the Illinois Supreme Court listen to arguments over non-profit sales tax exemptions.

Supreme Court Considers How Schools Support
Students With Disabilities
Nina Totenberg, NPR/All Things Considered, January 11

District 203 weighs its role in U.S. secretary of education confirmation
Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, January 10

Quincy Federation busy with strike plans
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 12

School board won't bail out the park district
John Dykstra, Kankakee Daily Journal, January 12

How is your child’s school preparing for Friday’s winter storm?
Lexi Cortes, Belleville News-Democrat, January 13

Dean Olsen, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 12


January 12, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the 100th General Assembly opens with the prospect of a budget compromise. East Moline SD 37 seeks a return to negotiations with its teachers union. Governor Bruce Rauner supports the nominee for the U.S. Secretary of Education. The cost of having police officers stationed in school buildings is going up in Kane County. Finally in the news, Rockford Schools take the next steps towards infrastructure and facilities improvements.

New General Assembly inaugurated
with all sides vowing to end impasse
Dan Petrella and Debby Hernandez, The Southern Illinoisan, Carbondale, January 12

East Moline teachers picket,
but Superintendent ready to get back to negotiations
Ashley Holden, KWQC, Davenport, January 10

Rauner joins other GOP govs to support Trump education nominee
Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, January 10

Kaneland, Burlington high schools to pay more for deputies
Susan Sarkauskas, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 4

Agreements outline next steps in new RPS schools, school closures
Corina Curry, Rockford Register Star, January 10


January 11, 2017
In today’s Leading News, with no agreement, the Quincy Teachers Union has set a strike date of January 17 in Quincy SD 172. St. Charles East High School is closed again today, Wednesday, as the district copes with widespread illness, possibly norovirus; nearby districts are not reporting increased absences. In Galesburg, District 205 considers building improvements and operating budget cuts. Finally in the news, another look at what’s on the budget table as Illinois’ 100th General Assembly commences.

Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 11

Officials: Classes canceled Wednesday
at St. Charles East after illnesses
Madhu Krishnamurthy, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 10

Norovirus likely what closed St. Charles East for two days: officials
Rafael Guerrero, Elgin Courier-News, January 11

Proposed D205 cuts include 10 teachers, librarians
Gary Tomlin, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, January 10

Senate plays waiting game with minimum wage, tax, casino plan
Tina Sfondeles, Chicago Sun-Times, January 9

No-budget 99th General Assembly wraps up
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, Springfield, January 10

January 10, 2017
In today’s Leading News, a case before the Illinois Supreme Court this week examines hospital property tax exemptions. In  St. Charles CUSD 303, a school is closed today after hundreds of students reported ill. The bill requiring Illinois schools to conduct lead testing in their water systems is back on track. Arlington Heights-based THSD 214, will introduce later start times. Finally in the news, the multi-bill effort to resolve the state budget crisis will wait at least until the new General Assembly is sworn in.

Should Illinois hospitals have to pay property taxes?
Court will weigh question
Lisa Schencker, Chicago Tribune, January 8

St. Charles East cancels classes after mass sickness
Sara Hooker, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 9

General Assembly close to requiring schools to test for lead
Casey Bischel, Belleville News-Democrat, January 10

District 214 will have later start times next school year
Christopher Placek, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, January 6

Senate delays vote on plan that raises income tax
Doug Finke, State Journal-Register, January 9


January 9, 2017
In today’s Leading News, read two takes on the lame-duck session of the Illinois General Assembly. Governor Bruce Rauner signed a bill into law last week, making it easier for out-of-state teachers to transfer credentials to Illinois. A proposed bill requiring schools to test for lead is on hold. Finally in the news, classrooms are finding alternative seating arrangements offer increased student focus and engagement.

Legislative session winding down; budget mess looms large
John O’Connor, Chicago Sun-Times, January 8

Lawmakers reconvene to finish term marked by impasse
Dan Petrella, The Southern Illinoisan, January 8

Teacher license transfer now easier
K. Janis Esch, Decatur Herald and Review, January 7

Bill to require school lead testing stalls in Springfield
Michael Hawthorne and Jennifer Smith Richards, Chicago Tribune, January 6

Alternative classroom seating means comfort, focus for students
Julia Evelsizer, The Pantagraph, Bloomington, January 6, 2017

January 6, 2017
In today’s Leading News, CPS seeks another round of cuts, while statewide, school districts are looking for late state payments. Danville CCSD 118 reviews its year of change with its community. School officials discuss a potential property tax freeze. Finally in the news Dunlap CUSD 323 and Princeville CUSD 326 educators get the message, "We don't need tech geeks who will teach, we need teaching geeks who will tech."

Chicago Public Schools seeks quick fix
to budget hole left by Rauner's veto
Juan Perez Jr., Chicago Tribune, January 5

State funding for buses, lunches and special ed arrives late
Suzanne Baker, Naperville Sun, January 5

D118 looks to connect with families after year of change
Carol Roehm, Danville Commercial-News, January 3

Local school leaders wary of Rauner's property tax freeze
'solution' to education funding
Matt Dutton, Herald-Whig, Quincy, December 23

Teachers ditch the textbook for technology
Pam Adams, Peoria Journal-Star, January 4

January 5, 2017
In today’s Leading News, the state’s stopgap budget expires Sunday, impacting higher education and social services. The Associated Press reported last week on teacher bonuses. North Shore SD 112, based in Highland Park, deals with turmoil and ongoing fallout from its school closing plans. Charter school officials have been reprimanded for their use of CPS data. Finally in the news, Madison County districts consider a county school facilities sales tax.

Stopgap budget set to expire, returning Rauner-Madigan standoff
to where it was last summer
Monique Garcia, Chicago Tribune, January 3

Report: 144 Illinois school districts gave bonuses last year
AP/The Southern Illinoisan, December 29

Suit seeking halt to D112 closings could be dropped
after school board vote
Karen Berkowitz, Pioneer Press/Highland Park News, December 27

3 Noble charter staffers OK’d using CPS student data to recruit
Lauren FitzPatrick, Chicago Sun-Times, December 23

Will Madison County voters decide
on a new sales tax for school construction?
Elizabeth Donald, News-Democrat, Belleville, December 31


January 4, 2017
In today’s Leading News, national politics went local late last year, as Woodland CCSD 50 discussed sanctuary status. The biennial Illinois Education Funding Advisory Board recommendation is to boost funding by $3000 per pupil. Meanwhile, more school districts report lack of payments to mandated categoricals. Suburban school district review policies. Finally in the news, early graduates who want to participate in senior events state their case to the Hamilton CCSD 328 Board of Education.

Woodland School District 50 discusses 'sanctuary' status proposal
Emily K. Coleman, Lake County News-Sun, December 20

Education panel recommends boosting funding by $3,000 per pupil
Kerry Lester, Daily Herald, Chicago suburbs, December 23

Schools still waiting on state money for transportation, special ed
Dan Petrella, The Southern Illinoisan, December 30

New year brings review of policies
in Elmwood Park, Leyden school districts
Pioneer Press/Franklin Park Herald-Journal, December 39

Early grads not able to participate in senior activities
Megan McNeill, Hancock County Journal-Pilot, December 29

January 3, 2017
In today’s Leading News, students in CPS’s Gage Park high schools meditate twice daily in an organized effort to reduce youth violence. School districts scramble as the state falls behind on mandated categorical payments. Published offers demonstrate the divide between Quincy Public Schools and its teachers. Finally in the news, the Galesburg Register-Mail wraps up a series on dwindling populations in small towns.

Can in-school meditation help curb youth violence?
Patrick M. O'Connell, Chicago Tribune, December 31

Delayed categorical payments weigh on schools
Jason Nevel, State Journal-Register, Springfield, December 31

Will County school districts still owed state funds
for special education, transportation
Felix Sarver, Joliet Herald-News, December 31

Posted offers show divide between QPS, union
Deborah Gertz Husar, Herald-Whig, Quincy, January 2

Special Report - Our Towns: Small towns getting smaller
Robert Connelly, The Register-Mail, Galesburg, December 31



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Leading News Archives