SPRINGFIELD – An effort to shed more light on the actual cost of educating Illinois public school students was approved by the state Senate Thursday.

Senate Bill 3234, sponsored by State Senator Andy Manar (D-Bunker Hill), would require an annual state report on public schools to include each school district’s administrative costs.

“Taxpayers deserve access to the most accurate information possible about how their money is used, and that includes the administration in public schools,” Manar said. “As we begin to implement the new school funding formula, it’s going to be more important than ever that everyone has the same information about the cost involved with providing an adequate education locally.”

The Illinois State Report Card contains data about statewide and individual school districts’ student and workforce demographics, finance, curriculum. It includes such data as average class size; a breakdown of students’ racial and ethnic backgrounds; percentage of low-income, special education and limited English proficiency students; operating expenditures; per-pupil state pension contributions; and various calculations under the state’s new school funding formula.

Districts’ administrative costs would be reported on a per-pupil basis under the measure.

Senate Bill 3236 was approved by the Senate with no opposition and goes to the House for consideration.

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