Superintendent's Note

From the desk of Jim McKay

Posted: April, 24, 2017 - 10:43am

State Budget Impasse

There is an effort statewide by many in a variety of public and private sectors including educators currently encouraging our state legislators to formulate and pass a responsible and responsive state budget. Below, are some of the consequences and concerns shared by many as a result of the current budget impasse.

All areas of society, including Illinois public school students, have suffered the consequences of Illinois’ financial problems over the past couple decades. For nearly the past two years, Illinois has operated with just a partial budget for education and “stopgap”or band-aid measures. These measures mean frozen and reduced budgets at local government entities, community organizations, and education agencies that support our families and communities. Even though education has been funded, schools and students still are negatively impacted due to the lack of certainty, inequitable funding and current unpaid bills from the state.

The state, by constitutional mandate, has the primary responsibility for funding its public schools but falls far short of covering even 50 percent of the cost.  Community High School District 117 receives 15.3 percent (8,527,321) of its total funding from the state, the balance is covered by local funds.  It is the job of the Governor and the Members of the General Assembly to create a comprehensive, balanced budget that supports all citizens, especially our students, our future.

As previously cited, Community High School District 117 receives 15.3 percent of our revenue from the state. The General State Aid payments (8.78%) are being paid on time, however the mandated categorical payments (6.52%) are not.  The categorical payments include expenses related to Special Education, Transportation and Free/Reduced Lunch support.  We have not received any categorical payments for this fiscal year, with the exception of one late quarter paid - from last fiscal year.

  Like any business, we need to know several months - preferably more - in advance how much
money we’ll receive so that we can make thoughtful spending decisions, from hiring staff to allocations for curriculum, maintenance and repairs, and much more for the coming school year.
Ongoing state financial uncertainty creates an environment where both residents and companies are not likely to stay or move to a state that has not passed a budget in nearly two years. This impasse hurts our current well-being as well as our state’s economic future.  Please share your concerns with our local legislators.  Click the following link to find your legislator. https://openstates.org/find_your_legislator/.

Yours in Education,

Jim McKay

post Archive
  • Posted: October, 9, 2018 - 10:22am

    Both Antioch and Lakes Community High Schools earn an Exemplary School designation from The State

    Every School in the state of Illinois will receive a designation on their annually issued school report card.  The Illinois State Board of Education’s vision of Illinois is a state of whole, healthy children nested in whole, healthy systems supporting communities wherein all people are socially and economically secure. Bringing this vision into reality requires all of us—the state, districts, schools, educators, families, and communities—working together. Illinois’ system of support and accountability helps us identify which schools need the greatest assistance to meet our shared…

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  • Posted: August, 10, 2018 - 8:03am

    Welcome Back And While You Were Away

    This is my 9th year of having the privilege to be the first to say welcome back; we are honored and happy to serve you and our communities!
    This time of the year is always invigorating and full of possibility.  Welcome the incoming Freshman Class of 2022!  We also welcome our upperclassman and anyone new to Community High School District 117; we truly look forward to ensuring that every student is offered the opportunity to grow and learn in a positive, safe, and engaging environment. Our dedicated and talented staff strives to realize our mission of Igniting the Passion and…

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  • Posted: February, 20, 2018 - 5:29pm

    School Safety Letter To Familes

    To our District 117 Families,

    Our hearts go out to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School community and all the families affected by the senseless shooting. We are greatly saddened by another instance of school violence that has devastated the community of Parkland.

    For Community High School District 117, the safety of students and staff continues to be a top priority.  As a District, we have built strong relationships with the Antioch, Lake Villa and Lindenhurst Police and Fire Departments. We are grateful for their leadership and input which helps guide our mission for…

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  • Posted: October, 31, 2017 - 10:13am

    2017 Illinois Report Card shows upward trends

    The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) today released the 2017 Illinois Report Card at http://webprod.isbe.net/ereportcard/publicsite/getSearchCriteria.aspx. The annual Illinois Report Card shows the performance and progress of schools, districts, and the state overall on a wide range of educational metrics. The www.illinoisreportcard.com interactive website will go live on Friday, Nov. 3. The Data Quality Campaign and the Education Commission of the States have praised the Illinois Report Card as comprehensive and easy to understand.

    State-level data on the 2017 Illinois…

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  • Posted: September, 29, 2017 - 7:56am

    Advanced Placement data show results of state’s focus on equity

    SPRINGFIELD – The College Board released non-accountability reports of Advanced Placement (AP), SAT, and PSAT results from Illinois students statewide. State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D., issued the following statement:

    “The Advanced Placement (AP) data released by the College Board show increases across the board in the numbers of students taking AP exams and in the percentages of students performing well. The State Board committed to increasing access to AP classes and exams, especially among underrepresented student groups. School teams across the state embraced…

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  • Posted: September, 7, 2017 - 3:07pm

    U.S. Department of Education approves Illinois ESSA Plan

    SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WAND) - The Illinois Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Plan has been approved by the U.S. Department of Education.

    Illinois State Board of Education officials say the state’s ESSA Plan incorporates feedback gathered from thousands of online comments and 100 in-person forums and meetings.  Under the Illinois ESSA Plan, multiple indicators of school quality and student growth will be collected and examined, and will be used to help schools perform better under a plan that specifically meets their unique needs. 

    Additionally, the Illinois ESSA Plan…

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  • Posted: August, 9, 2017 - 11:44am

    Welcome Back and While You Were Away

    Let me be the first to say welcome back, we are honored and happy to serve you and our communities!
    I would like to welcome the incoming Freshman Class of 2021!  We also welcome our upperclassman and anyone new to Community High School District 117; we truly look forward to ensuring that every student is offered the opportunity to grow and learn in a positive, safe, and engaging environment. Our dedicated and talented staff strives to realize our mission of Igniting the Passion and Discovery of Every Student.  We are very proud of our unwavering commitment to student growth…

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  • Posted: August, 7, 2017 - 4:55pm

    State Funding for Schools

    I want to provide residents of Community High School District 117 information regarding state funding for schools in Illinois for the 2017-18 school year as you may be familiar with this issue through the news media and other sources.

    Due to the inequality associated with the current Illinois school funding formula and its significant adverse consequences particularly to school districts with the greatest economic need, the legislature has developed a new funding formula designed with evidence based criteria to equitably support state funding for schools.  To date, the legislators…

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Ignite passion and discovery in every student
  • District 117 Logo

    Community High School District 117

    1625 Deep Lake Road

    Lake Villa, Illinois 60046

    Phone: 847-395-9001

    Fax: 847-395-7553

  • Antioch Community High School Logo

    Antioch Community High School

    1133 Main Street

    Antioch, Illinois 60002

    Phone: 847-395-1421

    Fax: 847-395-2435

  • Lakes Community High School Logo

    Lakes Community High School

    1600 Eagle Way Drive

    Lake Villa, Illinois 60046

    Phone: 847-838-7100

    Fax: 847-838-3670