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Righter: Legislation ensures schools will open in fall despite state budget impasse

Despite the state’s ongoing budget impasse, schools would open next fall and receive at least the same amount of funding they are receiving now under legislation co-sponsored by State Sen. Dale Righter (R-Mattoon).

Senate Bill 3434 would fully fund K-12 education for the first time in seven years and ensure no school district loses money through a hold harmless provision.

“This legislation ends the practice of proration and would finally fully fund the foundation level of $6,119 per student,” Righter said. “This is long overdue. It’s also important that in this legislation, no school district loses funding. If we are serious about making education and our children’s future a top priority, this legislation accomplishes that.”

SB 3434 would increase state funding for K-12 education by $227 million and includes $1.8 million for agriculture education.

“This legislation is a good solution while we continue to work and debate overhauling the state’s education funding formula,” Righter said. “Unlike other proposals in the General Assembly, this legislation doesn’t bailout the Chicago Public Schools at the detriment of downstate school districts, it doesn’t pick winners and losers, and most importantly, it makes every student a priority and gives much needed certainty to schools that they can open in the fall, even if the state’s budget impasse continues.”