ICCTA Action Alert
June 15, 2000

Gov. Ryan Signs Adult Education Bill
Governor George Ryan today signed into law House Bill 4266, which transfers the administration of adult education and literacy programs from the Illinois State Board of Education to the Illinois Community College Board beginning in July 2001.

In signing the bill at the James R. Thompson Center in Chicago, Ryan said, "Adult education and literacy is a top priority for the Illinois Community College Board. With ICCB providing the administration, the State of Illinois will be better positioned to meet the adult education and literacy needs of individuals and employers."

ICCTA was represented at the bill-signing by president Mike Sullivan of Lake Land College and executive director Dr. Gary Davis.

"Our board appreciates the Governor's support for this transition and welcomes the profound responsibility entrusted to us by Governor Ryan and the members of the General Assembly," said Edward Duffy, chair of the ICCB.

Dr. Joseph Cipfl, president and chief executive officer of the ICCB, praised the work of the members of the Illinois House and Senate in backing the transfer. "We certainly applaud the legislators' judgment that this is an issue whose time had come," Cipfl said. "The enthusiasm and tireless effort of our community college system and its leaders to get to this historic moment also must be fully recognized," he added.

Illinois community colleges currently serve more than 70 percent of the Adult Education and Literacy program students in the state. The transfer will eliminate duplication of administration and reporting between the State Board of Education and the Community College Board. This is an easy and cost-effective way to improve and eventually expand the state's adult education programs. The legislation addresses administration at the state level and does not affect the administration of local programs or the method of distributing funds.

"There are more people in Illinois in need of the programs that adult education and literacy provide than can be currently served," remarked Cipfl. He noted the demand is especially great in programs for new immigrants who need courses in English as a Second Language. "The ICCB is committed to expanding adult education and literacy programs to meet the growing need for a skilled workforce and a high quality of life for Illinois individuals and families," Cipfl added.

The ICCB and the State Board of Education have formed several teams that are orchestrating a smooth transition of administration by July 1, 2001. Staff from the ICCB and ISBE have worked together to identify seven key functional areas and to select teams to work cooperatively to transfer processes and knowledge in each area. Leaders were designated from both agencies to facilitate team efforts. The seven teams and team leaders are:

  • Transition Coordination - Sarah Hawker (ICCB)
  • Communication - Sarah Hawker (ICCB)
  • MIS and Data Systems - Don Wilske (ICCB)
  • Regulatory and Federal Requirements - Gail Lieberman (ISBE)
  • Program Components - Sue Petrilli (ICCB) and Dan Miller (ISBE)
  • Personnel - Sarah Hawker (ICCB) and Diana Robinson (ISBE)

  • Earlier this year, the Illinois Board of Higher Education, the Illinois State Board of Education and the Illinois Community College Board all voted to approve the transfer. House Bill 4266 passed the Senate on a 53-2 vote, while the Illinois House of Representatives passed the measure last month by an 83-31-1 margin.

    Sponsors of the legislation include: Senators Dan Cronin (R-Elmhurst), Todd Sieben (R-Geneseo), Kathleen Parker (R-Northbrook), Dick Klemm (R-Crystal Lake) and Robert Molaro (D-Chicago), and Representatives Tom Ryder (R-Jerseyville), Judy Erwin (D-Chicago), Bill Black (R-Danville), David Wirsing (R-Sycamore), and Larry Woolard (D-Carterville).

    Information from ICCB's June 14, 2000 news release

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