Fully elected school board becomes law in Chicago

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While Lightfoot campaigned on a fully elected board, she shifted her stance, instead supporting a hybrid option that she said would include the voices of undocumented families. Her administration has also argued it would be difficult to untangle the financial ties between the city and its school district; the city picks up certain pension costs for non-teaching staff and chips in tens of millions of dollars in tax-increment financing each year to help pay for capital improvements at schools. 

The new board would be 21 members—up from the current seven, and the largest of any major city. By 2027, all members would be elected: Twenty would be elected from districts drawn across the city, and the board’s chairman would be elected citywide.

In the interim, a board of 11 appointed and 10 elected members would join the board in January 2025. The 10 members, including the chair, would be appointed by the mayor and approved by the Chicago City Council, and would serve a two year term.

Teachers and other Chicago Public Schools employees cannot not serve on the board, but the bill otherwise imposes no limits on the ability of the Chicago Teachers Union to finance and campaign for board candidates.

via Crain’s Chicago Business

July 29, 2021 at 05:23PM

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