Chicago Public Schools

Chicago's schools are suing Illinois' governor and other state officials over how the state funds schools, claiming it violates the civil rights of the predominantly-minority student population in the nation's third-largest school district.

Tuesday's lawsuit was filed in Cook County on behalf of black and Hispanic families. It seeks to have a judge declare the formula unlawful.

Gov. Bruce Rauner says he'll meet with legislative leaders to negotiate a budget deal, and he's willing to include money he vetoed for Chicago Public Schools if it's part of a ''comprehensive package.''

Rauner said Friday that meetings are scheduled Saturday and Sunday with the four legislative leaders and ''I'm not taking anything off the table.''

cps.edu

In a sign the stalemate in Springfield is as strong as ever, Governor Bruce Rauner vetoed a bill that once  had been held up as proof he and Democratic leaders were capable of working together.

The action leaves politicians divided, and it could leave the financially-ailing Chicago Public Schools short some $215 million.

Republicans got on board with sending CPS extra money, but Rauner said he'd only sign it into law if legislators passed another, even bigger bill by the New Year to reduce the state's pension costs.

cps.edu

A Chicago high school that would have been named after the nation's first African-American president is a casualty of the deal that prevented a teachers strike.

The deal that the Chicago Teachers Union and Chicago Public Schools reached late Monday includes roughly $88 million from a $175 million surplus from tax-increment financing, or TIF, funds.

The deal required several aldermen to sacrifice projects in their wards that would have been paid for with those funds.

Moody's Investors Service downgraded the debt of Chicago Public Schools on the same day district teachers threatened to strike.

The group downgraded CPS's debt from B2 to B3, and called the district's financial condition "precarious" and "acute."  Monday from B2 to B3, Moody's called CPS' financial condition "precarious" and "acute." The new rating is one level above C, which Moody's describes as "speculative (and) of poor standing, and are subject to very high credit risk."

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