Illinois State Board of Education - Fiscal Year 2017 education budget requested
The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has released its Fiscal Year 2017 budget recommendation calling for an additional $262.1 million in funds and increasing the Foundation Level to $6,327 per student. The Foundation Level has not been raised since FY 2010 and hasn’t been fully funded at the statutorily required $6,119 amount since FY 2012.

In order to align ISBE’s goals of providing an equitable distribution of education dollars, the state board has suggested reallocating the $305 million line item for special education into the General State Aid (GSA) formula. Superintendent Tony Smith says that the change will ensure GSA funds will be distributed on a more equitable basis. If approved, the formula adjustment would benefit 77 percent of Illinois students in districts with the least wealth and the greatest number of low-income pupils. School districts that generate greater local resources and have a smaller amount of low-income students would receive a smaller portion of GSA funding. Losses for those schools would amount to less than one percent of their district’s operating revenue.