Hutchinson supports increase in local school funding, after-school programsSPRINGFIELD – A plan to increase school funding, fund vital human services providers and appropriate funds for ongoing highway and road construction projects passed the Senate today.

“Today’s vote means parents won’t have to worry that their children’s school won’t open on time this fall. It means college students can have faith that their MAP grants won’t be delayed and that their degree means something from their academic institution. And it means the countless human services providers who have been asked for almost a year to continue taking care of our most vulnerable without being paid will finally see payment,” co-sponsor State Senator Toi Hutchinson (D – Chicago Heights) said.

The proposal, contained in Senate Bill 2047, increases state support of public schools and ensures they are able to open on time this fall. Many schools were facing the prospect of not being able to open without their payments from the state. Locally, Chicago Heights School District 170 would see a $1,283,120 funding increase, Bloom Township High School District 206 would see a $994,479 funding increase, Homewood-Flossmoor High School District 233 would see an $864,976 funding increase and Manhattan School District 114 would see a $449,019 funding increase.

In addition, the plan provides vital funding for the Teen REACH program, which provides grants to support local communities’ after-school programs that serve at-risk youth. With Illinois youth suffering some of the highest unemployment rates in the nation, having a safe place to spend the crucial after-school hours is imperative.

“We know that the programs Teen REACH support work in protecting youth from violence and increase long-term success in school and at home,” Hutchinson said.

Senate Bill 2047 passed both the Senate and House today and now heads to the governor’s desk for his approval.

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