SPRINGFIELD – May 14, 2013. Lt. Governor Sheila Simon’s Classrooms First Commission legislation, House Bill 2267, passed the Senate unanimously today. The legislation, which will make it easier for school districts to voluntarily consolidate, now heads to the governor’s desk.
Simon, the state’s point person on education reform, chaired the bipartisan Classrooms First Commission, which examined ways to help school districts reduce duplicative spending and improve educational offerings. The resulting legislation approved by both the House and Senate would allow non-contiguous school districts to consolidate, for faster reorganizations in small districts, and high school districts to tie consolidation dates to capital funding.
“It is important that school districts throughout the state have the tools they need in order to help students succeed. This legislation will put our students – not bureaucracy – first,” said Simon. “I would like to thank Sen. Andy Manar and Rep. Jehan Gordon-Booth for their leadership in moving this bill, and I encourage Governor Quinn to sign it quickly.”
The Classrooms First Commission was comprised of P-20 stakeholders including teachers, administrators, parents and legislators, and it held public hearings across the state on school district consolidation last year. You can learn more about the commission’s recommendations here.