Tell your legislator it's "game over" for Illinois' voucher program!
In 2017, as a result of a backroom deal between then Governor Rauner, legislative leaders and the Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago,the IL General Assembly created a K-12 voucher program for Illinois in the form of a tax credit scholarship scheme. Known as the Invest in Kids Act, the law allows up to $75 million in tax revenue to be diverted to private schools each year.
This program was intended to last for five years and to sunset after the 2022-2023 school year. It was extended for one additional school year already. Some supporters of private and religious schools are lobbying for it to be made permanent and expand, alongside orgs whose goal is to privatize our public schools system like Betsy DeVos' American Federation for Children.
calling for the Invest in Kids program to end permanently, along with more than 50 other state and local organizations. Vouchers harm the public good in a variety of ways: they violate the fundamental principle of the separation of church and state. They divert public dollars from our already underfunded Illinois public schools. Research shows that they do not improve academic outcomes for children who receive vouchers. And we know that voucher schools in Illinois are discriminating on the basis of religion, disability status, LGBTQ+ status and more---that's not what education equity looks like!
Public funds should be for public schools that serve all children. It must be "game over" for IL's voucher program; the Invest in Kids Act must sunset as intended by the IL General Assembly after this school year!
Use this letter to write to your state representative and state senator and urge them to oppose any extension or expansion of the Invest in Kids voucher program.