Separate and unequal. That’s the system CPS students are trapped in.
For years, the State of Illinois has failed to fully fund education, hurting every school district in the state.
But CPS students face even more daunting prospects: Illinois’ broken approach to education funding has cut state support while imposing costly mandated pension payments, leaving CPS students with less money than their peers around the state. And even though we’ve done our best to keep cuts away from their classrooms, they still have fewer counselors, fewer after-school programs, old textbooks and crumbling school buildings – all of which will no doubt have an impact on their futures, especially when we face a $1 billion budget deficit next year.
The numbers tell the full story: this year, CPS received $.74 cents per student from the state, compared to the $1.00 per student received by every other district in the state.
A zip code should not determine the quality of a child’s education. Nor should his country of origin. Nor should her race.
This broken approach to education funding must not stand. That’s why today, we’re announcing a community-wide effort to raise awareness about our funding disparity – and to demand equality from our lawmakers.
CPS students make up 20 percent of the enrollment in Illinois public schools, and our city’s taxpayers contribute 20 percent of the revenue used to fund public education. Yet our children receive just 15 percent of the education funding from Springfield. The missing 5 percent is nearly $500 million this year alone – enough to save our schools.
And the disparity is only getting bigger.
Funding to CPS is being cut, while we’re being asked to pay more than any other district – and the math just isn’t adding up.
Governor Rauner’s solution? He’s proposing another $74 million cut to CPS next year.
We must say NO to Governor Rauner’s cuts to Chicago students – and we need our school communities to join this fight. Whether it’s making a call, visiting an office of one of your local elected officials, or talking with friends and neighbors, the supporters of Chicago’s children MUST make their voices heard. Visit cps.edu/equality to learn how to get involved.
Make sure your elected representatives know where you stand: no more cuts. We must reform funding now — Chicago’s students must be treated equally, with equal funding for their education.
Their educational futures depend on it.