Friday, October 27, 2017

New senior education advisor has school board experience

Emily Bastedo
Emily Bastedo, a school law attorney who previously served four years on an Elmhurst school board, and most recently served as Gov. Bruce Rauner’s associate counsel, has been appointed to direct the governor’s education policy team.

Bastedo, who was also chief of staff for first lady Diana Rauner, was named Senior Advisor to the Governor on Sep. 12. Prior to her state work, Bastedo was an associate at the law firm Chapman and Cutler LLP, spending most of her time acting as bond counsel to Illinois school districts. In 2013, Bastedo was elected to the Elmhurst Community Unit School District 205 Board of Education, where she served four years and sat on the district’s finance, operations, and policy committees.

Beth Purvis
She replaces Beth Purvis and will serve in a similar capacity. Bastedo will assume oversight of the governor’s education policy team, and will act as vice chair of the so-called Children’s Cabinet. Chaired by the governor, the Cabinet convenes administration advisors, as well as the executive leadership of the 16 state agencies that oversee initiatives for children and youth.

Purvis, a former charter school CEO, served as “education secretary,” a new position created by Gov. Bruce Rauner. At one of her first assignments, speaking to school board members, administrators, and school business officials at the Alliance Leadership Summit in February 2015, Purvis said the administration’s first priority will be “adequacy and equity of school funding for all schools.”

Over the past two and a half years, Purvis chaired a commission the governor convened to study how to reform school funding. She acted as an essential negotiator and adviser when lawmakers proposed various education funding plans. Purvis was praised by members of both parties in Springfield for her efforts in encouraging the adoption of the new school funding formula, which creates an evidence-based model for new state money dedicated to schools.

On Sep. 15, Purvis joined the Kern Family Foundation, a private, independent grant-making organization based in Waukesha, Wis., that promotes educational excellence. As senior program director, Purvis leads the K-12 and character program in strengthening and forging relationships with some of the leading educational and character organizations in the nation.

“Beth Purvis was appointed to a position that had never existed in state government before,” said IASB Executive Director Roger Eddy. “She came in very motivated and with a lot of energy, and she was successful at meeting her goals; she guided the completion of the ESSA state plan and the new school funding formula during a politically difficult time. “I want to thank her for her work and contributions toward improving our educational system in Illinois,” Eddy said.