Schools Consider New Test Fee Amid Budget Worries
State education officials are considering retaining a
traditional college-readiness test for high school juniors but passing the cost along to school districts and possibly the students' families.
The move is one cost-cutting possibility after Illinois schools have seen close to $1 billion in cuts since 2009. Educators warn of more drastic cuts if
lawmakers decide not to extend a temporary income tax hike set to expire at the end of 2014.
State board officials estimate it will cost $14 million for all high school
juniors to take the ACT test next year. They're considering providing the $52.50
test free only to low-income students.
The total cost of state testing totals $54 million next year. That includes
keeping the ACT and adding new exams at the elementary and high school levels.