Should Illinois take over Chicago Public Schools?

Gov. Bruce Rauner thinks it’s a good idea. Here’s his logic, according to ,of the Illinois News Network:

Still, Rauner insists that when the true costs of keeping CPS afloat without a state intervention

Brian Nguyen / Chicago Tribune

Brian Nguyen / Chicago Tribune

becomes clear, citizens will pressure state lawmakers to intervene on their behalf rather than see their taxes go up.

“You watch,” Rauner said at Chicago event Wednesday. “Watch Democratic legislators from around the state who are not from Chicago like the (House) speaker and the (Senate) president. You’re going to see that bill is not dead-on-arrival, as some people say.”

“We cannot allow the mayor and some of his friends inside the Legislature to come up with a structure to force liabilities onto other taxpayers,” Rauner said. “We cannot allow a transfer of those liabilities outside the city of Chicago.”

In a way, it’s counter intuitive: To prevent Chicago Public Schools from becoming a burden on the rest of Illinois, it’s necessary for the state to take over Chicago Public Schools. The right path, as the governor would have it, is to allow the state to take over the school system while passing legislation that would allow the school system to go bankrupt. That, in turn, could loosen the iron grip that the Chicago Teachers Union has on the school system by forcing a renegotiation of the generous labor contracts that the unions have negotiated with the school district.

Should be an interesting argument. If House Speaker Michael Madigan ever lets it get to the House floor for debate.

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  • It is interesting to contemplate, isn't it? The ineffective governor of a dysfunctional state government believes that this state government could bring enlightenment and fiscal responsibility to the Chicago Public Schools. In urging this, Governor Rauner is joining a growing list of Republican governors who believe the best way to serve their people (Republicans) is through state takeovers of cities and other local governments (with their Democratic majorities). Governor Snyder of Michigan has followed this course by taking over Detroit and Flint, and we have been seeing how well this has worked out for the people of these cities. Governor Christie is proposing this for New Jersey. The same for Arkansas, Tennessee and Louisiana.

    It is interesting to consider how the party that complains about local decisions being made by central government bureaucrats become less concerned with that when they control the central government bureaucrats.

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