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In spite of state budget impasse, New Holland-Middletown ESD 88 open come August, 2016

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Parents and teachers of New Holland-Middletown School District are receiving the following letter of reassurance from the superintendent and board that NH-M school will open and stay open for next school year despite the failure of legislators to pass a balanced budget and the subsequent inability to provide schools with allocated state funding.


The Illinois General Assembly and Governor Rauner failed to reach agreement on a state budget. The budget impasse continues in Illinois. You may soon hear (or already may be hearing) speculation about whether schools will be open in the fall.

I wanted to be perfectly clear and upfront to all parents and staff members in our District that regardless of the budget impasse, New Holland-Middletown ESD 88 will be open come August, 2016. The lack of a state appropriation for K-12 Education in Fiscal Year 2017 will result in dire consequences for many districts across the state and in our region. For NH-M, state funding comprises about 59% of revenue for Transportation and only about 5% of revenue for our Education Fund. Fortunately thanks to the conservative actions of our elected School Board over the past several years, our district has fund reserves that will not only allow for the opening of school, but enough operating fund balances that equate to 413 days of "cash on hand," currently the largest operating fund balance (in terms of days of cash on hand) in Logan County. These reserves should sustain the district well beyond a full school year and beyond as local property taxes will be collected timely. However, ongoing dysfunction at the Capitol ultimately results in a shift of the cost of educating Illinois' children to us, the local taxpayers.

What is happening right now? Not a lot in Springfield. Our top priority should be to enact a budget that includes adequate funds for all public schools. This will ensure that schools across the state (not just the ones with balanced budgets) open on time and are funded for the full year. While NH-M will not be directly affected as much as other schools, ultimately the children of our state regardless of their zip code should be everyone's concern. As Eleanor Roosevelt said, "We do well when we all do well."

Toxic climates often lead one to avoid getting involved altogether, as can be seen on the national level today with "outsider" candidates such as Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump gaining such popularity. However, if ever there was a time, NOW is the time to get involved! Contact your elected officials to let them know your feelings about the current "state of our state." Demand that legislators return to Springfield and pass a budget.

Your board of education and I will continue to monitor this situation. In fact, I recently attended a roundtable event with Governor Rauner and other area superintendents earlier this week on this very matter. We will develop contingency plans to respond to the prospect of an ongoing budget impasse into next Spring. We are committed to opening our schools on time, and every day, to continue to provide the children of New Holland-Middletown with the highest quality education to prepare them for college, careers and beyond.

Thank you for all you do to continuously support our great school,

Todd Dugan
New Holland-Middletown Elementary School District 88
Middletown, Illinois 62666

[Posted June 10, 2016]

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Rep. Bill Mitchell (R), 101st District

  • Springfield office:
    632 Capitol Building
    Springfield, IL  62706
    217-557-0571 fax
  • District office:
    5130 Hickory Point Frontage Road
    Suite 100
    Decatur, IL  62526
    217-876-1973 fax
  • Email: repmitchell@earthlink.net

Rep. Tim Butler (R) 87th District

  • Springfield Office:
    1128-E Stratton Office Building
    Springfield, IL 62706
    (217) 782-0053
    (217) 782-0897 FAX
  • District Office:
    1128-E Stratton Office Building
    Springfield, IL 62706
    (217) 782-0053
    (217) 782-0897 FAX
  • Email: butler@ilhousegop.org


Sen. Bill Brady (R), 44th District

  • Springfield office:
    103A Capitol Building
    Springfield, IL  62706
    217-782-0116 fax
  • District office:
    2203 Eastland Drive
    Suite 3
    Bloomington, IL  61704
    309-664-8597 fax
  • Website: www.brady.senategop.org



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