by Ted Dabrowski, Josh Dwyer, John Klingner
Illinois Policy Institute
June 12, 2014
The focus of Illinois’ current education funding system is not what’s best for students – it’s who controls the flow and distribution of taxpayer money. Nowhere is this more evident than in the state’s General State Aid, or GSA, for education budget – Illinois’ largest single education appropriation for K-12 education. Originally intended to support the state’s neediest school districts, the $4.8 billion GSA has become, in a single decade, a twisted mess of formulas that provide large, special subsidies to a few select districts. These special subsidies need to be ended immediately, and parents need increased control over the flow and distribution of money – control that currently resides solely with politicians and special interests. With more alternatives, parents can determine which school is best for their children’s needs.