August Board Meeting

Click here to see the agenda for the August board meeting, which took place yesterday.

Below is the CPS press release about what happened -- what's being cut and what's being expanded with the new budget.

Click here to see the actions from the previous month.

Press Secretary, Chicago Public Schools






Aug. 27, 2008

ChicagoBoard of Education Passes Budget that


the Line on Property Taxes

The Chicago Board of Education today unanimously approved

its Fiscal Year ’09 budget, which includes no property tax increase while

still investing more than $45 million in expanding classroom programs that are

driving systemwide improvements.

“Mayor Daley challenged us this year to find a way to

continue supporting our key programs without raising taxes,” said Chicago

Board of Education President Rufus Williams. “These are very tough

economic times, and this year—due to the hard work and careful planning

of our Board and our budget team over the past several years—we were able

to draw from our reserves and not further burden taxpayers, despite our continuing

need for more funding for our children.”

In order to balance the budget, the CPS is taking $100

million from its reserve fund, delaying a bond sale that will save the district

$35 million in debt-service payments, and saving about $12 million through

efficiencies in transportation and other non-classroom, operational costs.

“We cannot continue down this path,” said CPS

Chief Executive Officer Arne Duncan. “We cannot continue to take $100

million from our reserve fund beyond this year. Going much deeper than this can

jeopardize our financial security and the solid standing we’ve worked so

hard to secure with the rating agencies. We need a more stable state-funding

structure that meets the needs of school districts across the state.”

The key classroom programs that are being expanded for the

new school year are High School Transformation ($16 million), Turnaround

Schools ($7 million), Freshman Connection ($6.6 million), Reading Initiative

($6 million), and critical-language programs ($1 million—covering

Chinese, Arabic, and Russian.)

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