Madigan Introduces Education Funding Amendment

 
In this Jan. 27, 2016 file photo, Illinois Speaker of the House Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, attends a joint session of the General Assembly at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield.

In this Jan. 27, 2016 file photo, Illinois Speaker of the House Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, attends a joint session of the General Assembly at the Illinois State Capitol in Springfield.

Seth Perlman/Associated Press

The Illinois House speaker has proposed a constitutional amendment to strengthen the state's obligation to fund public education.  Chicago Democrat Michael Madigan introduced legislation Monday that declares that education is a fundamental "right'' - as opposed to "goal''.

It also states Illinois has the "preponderant financial responsibility'' for funding schools.

If the House and Senate approve, the amendment would be on November's ballot. 

Madigan spokesman Steve Brown says the Constitution is clear that the state should be the "primary'' financial source, but that the language of the proposed amendment makes it abundantly clear.
 
Senate Democrats have proposed revising the school-aid formula which they say is unfair.
 
Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner wants the Legislature to send him a "clean'' bill for funding schools to make sure they open this fall.

Story source: AP