Education Leaders Gather for Funding Forum

Mar 10, 2017

Education leaders from all over the state converged on Carbondale Friday, trying to move the issue of education funding forward in Illinois.

DuQuoin Superintendent Gary Kelly says slight changes to the state's formula, along with overall budget reductions, have cost his district more than three million dollars in recent years. He says that's had a negative impact on the students.
 
"With less teachers, class sizes are continuing to inch up, and we know that's having a negative impact on learning opportunities. I think we're to the point where we've done all the cuts we can."
 
Carbondale High School District Superintendent Steve Murphy echoes Kelly's concerns. He says a lack of money means a lack of opportunity for students.
 
"And it seems like the cuts that we've sustained over the years impact the people who need it the most. We need a funding reform system that is research based, it's not arbitrary, and it considers different factors."
 
Leaders point to several opportunities for state lawmakers to make changes to the school funding formula. Today's symposium was sponsored through the Paul Simon Public Policy Institute at SIU Carbondale.