The Forum advocated for early-childhood and English learners as Illinois develops its plan under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). Looking ahead to 2017, the Forum will collaborate with the Migration Policy Institute to work on assessment and accountability. Other actions taken by the Forum related to school funding reform in 2016 included: 

  • Blogging about the funding system and the need for reform. Read it here.
  • Meeting with the Illinois Advisory Council on Bilingual Education to inform them of school funding reform and accountability discussions at the state level

Forum staff also coordinated and moderated a panel on professional development related to English Learners at Illinois Association... Continue Reading

Posted In: Education

The Forum advocated for Chicago’s “Welcoming Cities Ordinance,” intended to strengthen protections for undocumented immigrants from harassment by city employees, particularly police. The Forum will continue to work with all organizations interested in ensuring that immigrants in Illinois, regardless of their country of origin are recognized as valuable and contributing members of society with equal access to equity and prosperity.

In addition, Forum leaders were part of numerous discussions with lawmakers at the local and federal level to support the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, including a recent meeting with U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, who has co-authored the BRIDGE Act, legislation intended to save DACA. The Forum asks Latinos in Illinois to contact... Continue Reading

Posted In: Immigration, Immigration Reform & Policy, Immigrant Integration

Operation H.E.L.P. (Housing Education Leadership and Policy) impacted more than  than 73,678 families in more than 44 community areas across Illinois in its two-year operation, which provided housing counseling services, case management, referrals, trainings and workshops to community leaders, landlords and tenants in foreclosure and participated in dissipating  foreclosure prevention resource information in housing fairs and community events.

As a result of this project, seven of the participating organizations in the collaboration have increased their capacity by developing housing programs to assist the needs of their communities  and are in the process of becoming HUD approved agencies. Click Here for more information about this project.

On November 18, the Latino Policy Forum facilitated... Continue Reading

Posted In: Housing

By Sylvia Puente

When President-elect Donald Trump is sworn in on January 20, 2017, I believe our nation will begin operating under a federal policy environment that is at best challenging, at worst hostile toward the interests of many Latinos, especially children and families.  It’s no accident that, according to a Latino Decisions analysis, more than 80 percent of Latinos who voted in November supported the other candidate. Latinos are fearful of a Trump White House.

The President-Elect ran a campaign promising to enact mass-deportation, build a wall between Mexico and the U.S., and eliminate the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.  Trump has... Continue Reading

By Karen Garibay-Mulattieri

In my 35 years as an educator, including time as a principal, I can say with confidence that with adequate, targeted resources, schools can strengthen the education of English learner children.  My school housed the program in our suburban district for English learners K-5, and the local community supported us every step of the way with sufficient resources for every child to receive a bilingual education. 

While the public discourse on state school funding reform is rife with debates about equity versus adequacy and winners and losers, the Latino Policy Forum is currently working with stakeholders on all sides of the debate to ensure that state funding for... Continue Reading