Cassie Creswell, director of the Illinois Families for Public Schools, will be the guest speaker Wednesday, Oct. 18, at a program looking at Illinois’ Invest in Kids Act and how it shifts money from public to private schools.
Creswell is part of the “Take Action: Sunset Invest in Kids” program presented by the League of Women Voters of Homewood-Flossmoor Area and the National Council of Jewish Women South Cook Section. The program begins at 7 p.m. at the Helen Wilson Meeting Room at the Flossmoor Public Library, 1000 Sterling Ave.
Illinois enacted the Invest In Kids Scholarship Tax Credit Program in 2017. The program offers a 75% income tax credit to individuals and businesses that contribute to qualified Scholarship Granting Organizations (SGOs).
The SGOs then provide scholarships for students whose families meet the income requirements to attend qualified, non-public schools and technical academies in Illinois. The program is under the Illinois Department of Revenue. The tax write-off portion of the program is set to expire on Jan. 1.
The Invest in Kids program acts as a school voucher program that diverts an estimated $75 million from public education, according to Illinois Families for Public Schools. The money is provided to private schools that are not accountable and nontransparent on how they use the money. At the same time, the organization said 80% of Illinois public schools are underfunded, the organization said.