Illinois House pass elected Chicago school board bill despite mayor’s opposition

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. — Chicago is one signature away from getting an elected school board.

The Illinois House passed a bill over Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s objections that would create an elected school board for Chicago. 

The House passed the measure 70-41 Wednesday night.

Last-minute pleas from the mayor to stop, make changes or slow down Wednesday’s vote did not prove successful.

Crain’s Chicago is reporting the mayor met with the House Black Caucus Tuesday and asked for a delay in the vote. The bill, which has already passed the state senate, would create a fully elected 21-member board by 2026 after a hybrid transition board which would include 10 elected members and 11 appointed by the mayor after the 2024 general election.

While campaigning for mayor, Lightfoot was in favor of an elected board but she does not like the one making its way through Springfield.

She has expressed her concern about the cost of school board elections — which could keep people running as well as what she calls the lack of ensured diverse representation. 

“A lot of the conversation that has been had during the course of this last session has been about dividing the spoils of CPS. It’s about power and paying back somebody’s political patrons. it hasn’t been centered around our kids. It’s not only telling but rightening,” the mayor said.

The governor is expected to sign the bill once it does get to his desk.

Read more Chicago news headlines here.

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