black ed 011221SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Steve Stadelman (D-Rockford) voted for a comprehensive measure to focus on achieving racial equity within education Monday. 

“When you focus on making a more inclusive education system, everyone benefits,” Stadelman said. “This legislation will help even the playing field for students who may need additional resources.” 

The overhaul of the state’s education system will require the Professional Review Panel to review funding adequacy target calculations, racial equity, and whether funding goals are sufficient, among other things.

“There is no excuse for any child in the state to not reach their full potential solely because their ZIP code, socioeconomic background or the color of their skin,” Stadelman said. “Providing necessary services at an early age will ensure better educational outcomes for the entire state.” 

The bill creates new programs to support education from early childhood to college. Students entering kindergarten would be more rigorously assessed for academic, social and emotional development skills. The state's standards for high schools would be revised to ensure more students are able to attend college. Other measures include a six-week summer program to help students in poverty and the creation of a task force to support equitable environments in Illinois schools.

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The measure, House Bill 2170, has passes both chambers. It will now go to the governor’s desk for further consideration.