Part #2: How the Evidence Based Funding model is meant to benefit the Geneseo School District.
The EBF model looks at 27 research-based elements that are proven to increase student achievement such as smaller class sizes, reading specialists, and access to technology. The Illinois State Board of Education then distributes additional money to schools who do not have the means locally to provide such things adequately to their students. More money for the state should mean more money for Geneseo, right? Yes and no.
The 27 research-based elements, when infused with our current staff and student population, demonstrate a significant gap in what we should be providing. In fact, if we use the model the state uses to calculate the new funding, Geneseo should be employing 215 staff members. We currently employ 157. That’s 58 fewer staff than recommended and by which we will be evaluated under this funding model!
For the 2017-2018 school year, Geneseo received an additional $92,000 from ISBE under the EBF model beyond what it received in 2016-2017. This money does not begin to cover the $1.2 million the district deficit spent during the 2016-2017 school year. The $5.1 million we received from the state in Fund 10 funding in 2016-17, fails in comparison to the $7.0 million we received from the state in the same fund in 2008-09. Unfortunately, the new funding will not help us reach the level of staff and supports we should be proving our students at Geneseo CUSD 228.