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Entity seeks renewal of funding from Dist. U-46

By Seth Hancock
  Despite originally intended to be wholly funded by outside sources, School District U-46 is being asked to be the largest funder of the Alignment Collaborative for Education (ACE).
  ACE is asking for a renewal of last year’s funds from U-46, $51,000, which is slated for a Board of Education vote at its meeting on Monday, Jan. 11. The request was presented on Dec. 14, 2020 at a virtual meeting due to COVID-19 restrictions.
  The proposal states that ACE’s operating budget is $227,000 with a majority going towards two full-time employees. ACE’s revenue last year was $230,000, and it has secured $127,625 so far this year.
  U-46 represents 24 percent of ACE’s funding and is the largest singular entity funding the group. Additional taxpayer funds go towards ACE, including 11 percent funding from the City of Elgin and Village of Hanover Park.
  Superintendent Tony Sanders said in 2016 that ACE “is all paid for through fundraising” with the exception of a “portion to kick it off.”
  The organization was founded in 2013 under former Superintendent Jose Torres and is comprised of government and business entities within U-46.
  Nancy Coleman, ACE’s executive director, has stated it has three target areas including preparation for early education students, trauma informed care for elementary through high school students and post-secondary careers and educational pathways.
  Peter Sikorski, chair of ACE’s board, elaborated on the organization’s design as telling the public how to serve U-46 rather than how the government school system can serve the taxpayers who fund it. He’s said the goal is to answer “what does U-46 need of the community to have broad community support” instead of “an organization looking to tell U-46 what to do.”

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