Pritzker says he would sign Invest in Kids extension

Pritzker says he would sign Invest in Kids extension

Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker said he would extend the Invest in Kids tax credit scholarship program if a bill reaches his desk. State lawmakers on Oct. 24 return to Springfield.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker said he would sign legislation extending Illinois’ Invest in Kids tax credit scholarship program.

“I will support it if it comes to my desk to extend the program in whatever form,” Pritzker said. “I mean, I can’t imagine it would show up in some form that I would be unwilling to. But again, the reality is that the legislature needs to go through this process.”

Polling showed a majority of Illinois voters support the program, especially parents and low-income Illinoisans. But Invest in Kids has faced pressure from teachers unions, such as the Illinois Education Association and Chicago Teachers Union, who want lawmakers to let it expire.

CTU President Stacy Davis Gates sends her son to a private school, as does the chief lobbyist for the IEA. If they choose private schools for their children, why would they oppose that choice for the low-income families helped by Invest in Kids?

“The fact that this program could end because of partisan politics is insane. These representatives are supposed to represent us, the constituents, not the teachers’ unions and not the IEA,” said April Colette, of Gurnee, whose daughter attends private school on an Invest in Kids scholarship.

“This is the education of the children of your state. It’s not about politics. A good education shouldn’t be about which district you’re in or how much money your family needs. That’s the entire basis of the Invest in Kids tax credit scholarship program,” she said.

In the 2022-2023 school year, minority students received over half of the Invest in Kids scholarships from the state’s largest scholarship group. State lawmakers begin veto session on Oct. 24, which is their last chance to extend the program before it expires at the end of 2023.

The governor giving a green light for the program, when he previously said it should be repealed, is a good sign. Contacting your state lawmakers and asking about their stance on Invest in Kids can help remind them Pritzker awaits a bill.

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