As head of CCI's Education Department, Zach Wichmann writes an occasional newsletter on education issues pending at the state and federal level and their impact on Catholic schools.
The deadline for the introduction of new bills for the spring legislative session was Feb. 14, so we've sifted through the new legislation for measures that would impact our Catholic schools. We break down the new initiatives in our February 2014 newsletter into three categories: appropriations, regulation, and school choice. We'll also keep you updated throughout the session on the progress of these bills.
Consider this edition of our education newsletter a primer on the basics on advocating for our Catholic schools. Learn about school choice, state regulations and funding of grant programs, including the all-important Textbook Block Grant. Read about it here in our January 2014 issue.
School visits from the Illinois State Board of Education are needed in order to garner state recognition this year. The Catholic Conference of Illinois worked with the Board to focus on the backlog of state visits — those schools that have not been visited since 2007 — and reduce the amount of paperwork under relaxed deadlines. The result: Only 340 schools will be required to undergo a state visit this year — down from more than 500. Read more about it in our November 2013 Education Newsletter.
The school year is back in full swing, and so is the CCI Education Newsletter. Check out the October 2013 issue to catch up on education-related legislation passed last year requiring insurance for high school student athletes, tweaking school safety drills, and updating required immunizations for students. Learn about EdChoice Illinois, which is leading a new statewide coalition working to advance school choice. And check out the Catholic schools that were just named Blue Ribbon Schools — they make up nearly 40 percent of the 21 Illinois schools receiving this federal recognition.