Illinois’ new Governor Bruce Rauner wants more charter schools, that much is clear. His first move in this area was to hire Tony Smith as the Superintendent of the Illinois State Board of Education. He was a proponent of charter schools as superintendent of the Oakland, CA school district.
Now word comes out that Rauner is paying $250,000 per year to his education secretary, Beth Purvis. Ms. Purvis was the CEO of the Chicago International Charter School network, which has 16 campuses with 9,222 students enrolled. Read more about how Governor Rauner tried to hide Purvis’ salary within an agency whose budget he intends to slash here. Two-Hundred Fifty Thousand dollars is a lot of Illinois taxpayer money – Rauner justifies paying a consultant that kind of salary by stating you have to pay good people good money. That money will be used to find ways to siphon more of Illinois’ taxpayer dollars away from public schools and into the pockets of private investors.
Governor Rauner is pro-business; he has disclosed his net worth is in the hundreds of millions of dollars. Read about what Rauner thinks about how charter schools should treat ELL students and students with disabilities here.