In 2017, a backroom deal between then Governor Rauner, legislative leaders and the Catholic Church 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 due to sunset after the 2022-2023 school year, but supporters of private and religious schools want it to continue.
Illinois Families for Public Schools is leading a coalition to oppose any extension or expansion of this voucher program. Vouchers harm the public good in a variety of ways including by diverting public dollars from our already underfunded Illinois public schools, and research has shown that they do not improve academic outcomes for children who receive vouchers.
Time's up for IL's voucher program, and we need to ensure that it sunsets as intended after this school year! Learn more here:
- Illinois' Backdoor Vouchers: What you need to know about Invest in Kids Act Slideshow from IL-FPS
- One-page explainer
- Public Funds Public Schools Voucher and Funding Diversion Legal Cases
- National Coalition for Public Education Opposing Private School Vouchers: A Toolkit for Legislators and Advocates
- IL Dept of Revenue: Invest In Kids site
- Center for American Progress (May 2019) The Danger Private School Voucher Programs Pose to Civil Rights
- Network for Public Education's Privatization Toolkit
Are you interested in helping us end Illinois' voucher program? Sign up here to get updates about the campaign and opportunities to get involved!
If you represent an organization that would like to be part of the coalition working on this campaign, please get in touch via email [email protected]
We are also happy to do presentations for your neighborhood or community group to explain IL's voucher program and why it needs to end. Email us to schedule a time.