The Evidence Based Funding Model: What it means for Geneseo and what it doesn’t mean for Geneseo (Part #3)

Part #3:  How the Evidence Based Funding model will never get Geneseo to long-term financial stability and what the District will have to do with that knowledge.

Another critical part of the Evidence Based Funding (EBF) model is the district’s local capacity.  Local capacity is the district’s ability to generate revenue locally, through property taxes and other local means, at a level that is proportionate and adequate.  The state will not continue to give districts new money under the EBF model if it feels it is not doing its part locally.

According to the Illinois Report Card, Geneseo CUSD 228 is only receiving 75% of what it should under the EBF model, largely in part because locally we are underfunded.  Whether you agree with their assessment or not is a moot point because that is the figure that will keep us from ever getting fully funded.  Geneseo is a Tier II school (from the video in Part #1), so we will only receive limited future evidence based funding.  The state will not help us completely close the gap between $20 million generated and $27 million needed.  Only locally can we help shrink the gap through additional forms of revenue such as an Education Fund referendum, cuts, or combination thereof.

The Evidence Based Funding model is a historic step in the right direction towards adequate and equitable funding for every district across the state of Illinois.  It is not a silver bullet for Geneseo or other districts to get out of debt, but it does help by providing some additional funding and for helping us see that locally we are going to have to control our own destiny on what we expect the future of Geneseo education to look like.

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