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Archive for September 3rd, 2015

Union Response to House Vote: Rauner’s Political Assault Defeats Fair Arbitration Bill

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

By slim margin, House fails to override veto after unprecedented threats to legislators

Following an intense barrage of false claims about the fair arbitration bill by the Rauner Administration, naked threats of political retaliation by the Republican leadership and paid attacks by right-wing super-PACs, the Illinois House of Representatives today fell three votes shy of the 71 needed to override the governor’s veto and enact Senate Bill 1229.

Although the bill did nothing more than extend to child protection workers, nurses, caregivers, emergency responders and other state employees the same independent arbitration process provided to police, fire and other public safety personnel in Illinois for more than 30 years, the Rauner Administration justified its veto with an array of false claims about the bill’s provisions, constitutionality and potential cost, as well as unsubstantiated ad hominem attacks on the independence and fair-mindedness of arbitration professionals.

Multi-million-dollar super PACs allied with the governor — including Turnaround Illinois and the Koch Brothers-funded Americans For Prosperity — flooded legislative districts with robocalls and attack ads that repeated many of the same false claims, confusing voters about the bill’s true intent.

In reality, public service workers and their unions supported SB 1229 to help avert the potential conflict, hardship and disruption of a statewide strike or lockout by offering arbitration as an alternative means of resolving contract disputes between state employees’ unions and the Rauner Administration if ongoing negotiations fail to produce agreements.

Finally today, House Republican leadership publicly threatened rank-and-file lawmakers with political retaliation if they voted to enact the bill–a threat that longtime statehouse watchers called unprecedented in its brazenness.

“The governor’s ferocious and false attacks on this moderate and responsible bill clearly show he wants conflict, not compromise,” Illinois AFL-CIO President Michael Carrigan said. “The governor’s assault on this bill may have won the day but poisoned the well for legislators of both parties who want to work together responsibly to solve problems and serve the people of Illinois. It is clear that Governor Rauner will stop at nothing to carry out his scorched-earth agenda against working people, their rights and well-being.”

“Day in and day out, public service workers in state government keep us safe, care for veterans, protect kids and much more,” said Roberta Lynch, executive director of the largest union of state employees, AFSCME Council 31. “State employees don’t want to be forced out on strike, but we’re determined not to let Governor Rauner undercut workers’ rights, jeopardize workplace safety or threaten the economic security of working families.”

As a candidate, Governor Rauner repeatedly vowed to “take a strike and shut down state government for a few weeks” in order to force workers to accept his extreme demands. More recently, the governor has made stripping the rights of workers to bargain collectively a precondition of enacting a state budget. And in a possible signal that he is preparing to provoke a work stoppage, the Rauner Administration has solicited retirees to serve as strike breakers and reportedly considered mobilizing the National Guard.

The governor’s assault on the arbitration provisions of SB 1229 has now derailed the best hope of amicably settling union contracts that are fair to all.

“The Illinois labor movement will remain united,” Carrigan said. “Even though today’s outcome is deeply disappointing, we appreciate that the vast majority of legislators stood with working people and did the right thing. Our fight to protect the middle class from the governor’s extreme agenda is only just beginning.”

IDPH Reports Four Confirmed Cases of Legionnaires’ Disease in Quincy, Including One Death

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Adams County Health Department (ACHD) are reporting four confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease, including one death in Quincy.  At this time there is no evidence they are connected to the Illinois Veterans’ Home-Quincy.

“As part of our investigation of the Legionnaires’ disease outbreak at the Illinois Veterans’ Home-Quincy, we asked our local health care providers to help us with surveillance of the disease and test individuals in the community who have symptoms related to Legionnaires’ disease,” said ACHD Administrator Jerrod Welch, M.P.A., C.P.H.A.  “We have thoroughly investigated each confirmed case for a connection with the outbreak, as well as any possible connection to one another.  At this time, we have found no connections.”

Because of the increase in testing, public health officials expect to find more cases than during a non-outbreak situation.  Legionnaires’ disease is not transmitted from person to person.

Legionella bacteria occurs naturally in the environment.  Approximately 200 cases are reported each year in Illinois.  Most are not associated with an outbreak and are considered isolated cases.  Adams County has had cases of Legionnaires’ disease reported in three of the past six years.

“Based on our investigation thus far, we do not believe there is an increased risk of Legionnaires’ disease to the Quincy community,” said IDPH Director Nirav D. Shah, M.D., J.D.  “We continue to focus on the outbreak at the Illinois Veterans’ Home-Quincy and investigate possible sources of Legionella bacteria and make recommendations on how to eliminate the bacteria.”

Legionella bacteria grow in areas of warm water.  Most cases of Legionnaires’ disease can be traced to plumbing systems where conditions are favorable for Legionella growth, but also to broken air conditioners or small decorative yard fountains.

State Senator Gerald Malloy and Inez Tenenbaum to Serve as South Carolina Draft Biden Co-Chairs, Isaiah Nelson Hired as State Director

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Columbia, SC – Draft Biden announced that State Senator Gerald Malloy (D-Darlington) and former State Superintendent of Education Inez Tenenbaum will serve as the Co-Chairs of the South Carolina Draft Biden movement.

“I am proud to help lead the effort in South Carolina as my good friend, Vice President Joe Biden, explores running for President of the United States,” State Senator Gerald Malloy said. “Over the last few weeks, I have been hearing from folks in my Senate District [Chesterfield, Darlington, Lee & Marlboro Counties] and throughout the state and the message is clear: South Carolina wants Vice President Biden to not only run for President, but to be the next President of the United States. South Carolina is ready to lead the effort to Draft Biden.”

Inez Tenenbaum noted, “Vice President Biden would not only be a strong candidate for President, but would make South Carolina Democrats proud as the next Democratic nominee and ultimately the next President of the United States. His ties in South Carolina are deep, and I am honored to work with this team to help encourage the Vice President to do what the people of South Carolina are ready for him to do: run for President.”

Draft Biden has also announced the hiring of an experienced team to lead the Draft effort. Isaiah Nelson, the Coordinated Campaign Director for the South Carolina Democratic Party in 2014, will serve as State Director.

“Over the last few months, folks all across South Carolina have been getting excited about the possibility of Vice President Biden running for President,” said Nelson. “We have a great team assembled in South Carolina of experienced and well respected staff ready to get to work to support and draft our Vice President.”

The following veteran political strategists will also be joining the Draft Biden team in South Carolina:

  • Kendall Corley, Political Director. Originally from Lexington, SC, Kendall is a well-respected South Carolina-based political staffer. He has worked on over 50 campaigns in Virginia and South Carolina, ranging from school board to presidential, including the Benjamin for Mayor Campaign (Columbia), the 2008 Obama Campaign, and for South Carolina Democratic Party. He currently is a principal at K.L. Corley and Associates LLC and will be heading up legislative and constituency outreach.
  • Morgan Allison, Outreach Director. Originally from Piedmont, SC, Morgan was the Get out the Vote Director for the 2014 South Carolina Coordinated Campaign, where she oversaw the entire turnout operation for statewide, federal and local Democratic candidates in the 2014 election cycle. She is currently the Chief of Staff to State Representative James E. Smith, Jr. (D-Richland), and will take a part time leave of absence to manage community outreach.
  • Lauren Nastoff, Field Director. Originally from Greenville, SC, Lauren was a Regional Field Director for the upstate in the 2014 South Carolina Coordinated Campaign where she led the turnout operation for the Democratic ticket. Lauren will lead the effort to garner support from activists and supporters for the Draft effort.

Background: The Draft Biden SuperPAC is an effort to compel Vice President Biden to throw his hat into the ring for the 2016 Presidential campaign, Over the past few weeks, the Vice President has given numerous signs that he is seriously considering making a bid for the White House. The Draft Biden SuperPAC is currently working to build the infrastructure and recruit the support the Vice President would need should he launch a campaign. Well over 200,000 Americans have signed a petition to ask the Vice President to run.

About Senator Gerald Malloy: Senator Malloy, originally from Chesterfield County, was first elected to the South Carolina Senate in 2002 and represents Chesterfield, Darlington, Lee, and Marlboro counties. Malloy has been a leader within the Democratic Party as a champion for rural economic development and a voice for the hard-working, but under-represented, people of South Carolina. He also works as an attorney at Malloy Law Firm in Hartsville, S.C. A graduate of the University of South Carolina Law School, Malloy and his family attend Jerusalem Baptist Church in Hartsville, SC.

About Inez Tenenbaum: Mrs. Tenenbaum is the former Chairman of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, a position to which she was appointed by President Obama. A well-respected Democrat throughout the state and country, she was the twice elected Superintendent of Education from 1999-2007, serving with both Democratic and Republican Governors. She was the Democratic Nominee for United States Senate in the strongly contested 2004 General Election, and is currently a partner at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP in Columbia, SC.

About Isaiah Nelson: Isaiah, a graduate of the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC, has done extensive work for Democrats throughout the South. Serving as the 2014 Coordinated Campaign Director for the South Carolina Democratic Party, Isaiah oversaw the turnout operation for the Governor, Lt. Governor and United States Senate races in South Carolina in 2014. Most recently, he was the campaign manager for Mayor Alvin Brown in Jacksonville, Florida.

Thurgood Marshall College Fund Announces 2015 Apple HBCU Scholars Program

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

The deadline is September 18, 2015.

Nationwide (BlackNews.com) – Tech giant Apple, maker of the iPod, iPad, and iPhone, has partnered with the Thurgood Marshall College Fund to create the Apple HBCU Scholars Program. The program will offer a one-year scholarship to 30 students selected as Apple Scholars. This award will be applied to the scholars final year of study.

More importantly, the inaugural class of scholars will receive an opportunity to develop key skills to enhance their resumes and help launch their careers through the hands-on experience gained at one of the top tech companies in the world.

These scholars will have the opportunity to:

* Be awarded up to $25,000 (scholarship) for their senior year of study
* Participate in a summer internship with Apple in Cupertino, California
* Participate in a year-round development program to prepare for post-graduation careers
* Be paired with an Apple employee mentor during their senior year
* Serve as Ambassadors on their HBCU campuses to build awareness for the Apple and TMCF Diversity Initiative
* Attend the TMCF Annual Leadership Institute in Washington, DC in November 2015
* Participate in the Apple HBCU Immersion experience in Cupertino, California during the spring of 2016

All applications must be submitted online by Friday, September 18, 2015.

For more details and/or to apply, visit:

To search hundreds of other 2015/16 scholarships, visit:

Best-Selling Author Rodney Flowers to Host His Inspiring 9-Week Video Conference Program, “Get Up And Achieve More”

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS
“Develop an unbreakable spirit and become empowered to overcome life’s greatest challenges”

Rodney Flowers

Leonardtown, MD (BlackNews.com) – Rodney Flowers, African-American author of the best-selling book, Get Up! I Cant. I Will. I Did… Heres How!, announced today that registration is now open for his inspiring eight-week video conference program, Get Up and Achieve More.

The program begins on October 1, 2015, and it will help many African Americans develop an unbreakable spirit so they can kick adversity aside and come back stronger than ever.

If youve ever felt like youve taken such a body blow that you might not be able to bounce back, I encourage you to learn about my program, Get Up and Achieve More, says Rodney Flowers. Over the course of nine dynamic weeks youll learn to master life-transforming lessons and principles that will enable you to overcome any obstacle and live your dreams.

Rodney goes on to say, After a serious high school football injury that put me in a wheelchair, I busted through tremendous barriers to rise up, walk tall again and become a bestselling author. I did it by embracing a set of life-changing lessons that now form the core of my, Get Up and Achieve More program.

Get Up and Achieve More is an action-based program that is intended to energize African Americans and help them bust free from self-imposed beliefs that hold them back; let go of limiting attitudes and replace them with a can-do mindset; awaken the amazing power they have within to overcome any challenge; and use past setbacks as fuel for future success stories.

New York Times bestselling author, Peggy McColl is among many who fully endorse Rodney Flowers and his inspiring programs, …Rodney Flowers encourages you to think positive, never give up and keep working hard towards your dreams. His ability to surpass obstacles, overcome adversity, and rise to his level of success is truly amazing.

Ms. McColl concludes by saying, For all he has done and continues to do to help those around him speaks volumes about his heart! Rodney Flowers is truly an inspiration.”

Rodney Flowers Get Up and Achieve More program begins on October 1, 2015, and runs for nine consecutive weeks. The course fee includes multiple teaching materials and weekly video conference sessions with Rodney, who will lead the group through inspiring lessons, exercises and assignments.

Those who register for the program before September 13, 2015, will save more than $300 and receive over $1,500 in bonus items.

For further pricing information and additional details about Rodneys Get Up and Achieve More program, contact him today at Rodney@RodneyFlowers.com or visit www.RodneyFlowers.com.

About Rodney Flowers
Rodney Flowers is the author of the bestselling book, Get Up! I Cant. I Will. I Did… Heres How! He has gained a well-earned reputation in the African-American community as a vibrant role model who has a tremendous impact on every life he touches. He holds a BA and Masters Degrees in Business Administration, and hes contributed more than 14 years of his life to service with the U.S. Department of Defense (NAVY).

In addition, he is a co-author of the Amazon international bestseller, Unwavering Strength, Volume 2, which is a moving collection of stories by 35 gifted authors. Rodney also generously provides rental properties to those in need through his private real estate company.

Photo: Rodney Flowers, best-selling author

Acclaimed Documentary on Post-Katrina New Orleans Marching Bands “The Whole Gritty City” Released on VOD

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Whole Gritty City Documentary

New York, NY (BlackNews.com)–Ten years after the natural and human-made disaster called Hurricane Katrina nearly destroyed New Orleans, an award-winning film focusing on New Orleans children struggling to reach adulthood as they rebuild their lives and the citys musical culture is being widely released on VOD platforms. THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY, an 89-minute documentary that plunges viewers into the world of three New Orleans school marching bands, is now available on VOD and DVD on Amazon Prime and Amazon Instant Video, and on Hulu and Hulu Plus. It is also part of the opening lineup of films on the new streaming service specializing in independent films of the African diaspora, KweliTV.

The film follows children growing up in America’s most musical city, and one of its most dangerous, as their band directors get them ready to perform in the Mardi Gras parades, and teach them to succeed and to survive. Navigating the urban minefield through moments of setback, loss, discovery, and triumph, these children and their adult leaders reveal the power and resilience of a culture.

THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY features three marching bands in the years after Hurricane Katrina devastated the city: the O. Perry Walker and L.E. Rabouin high school bands, and The Roots of Music, a new band for middle school-age children. These young beginners in Roots are put through their paces by the program’s founder Derrick Tabb, drummer for the Grammy Award-winning Rebirth Brass Band.

As Mardi Gras approaches and the young musicians progress, the film focuses on a few of these kids. Partly through video they create with portable cameras, we discover their passions and quirks, their personal struggles and tragedies. We come to see the powerful positive role being in the band plays in their lives. 11-year-old Bear, determined to master the trumpet, lives in the shadow of an older brother murdered at age 19. 18-year-old drum major Skully shouts out to loved ones he’s lost to violence, including the band director who was a father figure. 12-year-old Jazz aspires to be a musician like her father, even as her mother struggles to provide for the family.

Along with their bandmates these kids enter into the rigors and glory of marching in Mardi Gras parades in front of thousands of cheering spectators. The film culminates in a different kind of musical performance: a moving funeral tribute by band members from across the city to a young man who was one of their own.

This New Orleans marching band story is at the same time a unique portrayal of an American inner city. It highlights men with an open-eyed, deep commitment to the community they’ve grown up in and the children in their charge. Viewers who know first-hand the African American urban experience find a celebration of the strength and insight of these men, and the potential and resilience of their students. Others find a moving, empathetic portrayal of an unfamiliar world, and come to feel a stake in the struggles and triumphs of these children and their mentors.

THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY was nationally broadcast in February 2014 as a two-hour CBS News Special 48 Hours Presents: The Whole Gritty City, hosted by jazz great Wynton Marsalis. I was honored with a 2015 Christopher Award for work that affirms the highest values of the human spirit, and was a documentary finalists in the 2015 National Association of Black Journalists Salute to Excellence Awards.
Producer and director: Richard Barber
Co-director and director of photography: Andre Lambertson

Watch the trailer and learn more about the documentary at:
Reactions to The Whole Gritty City:

Gritty City is glorioius. Alternately joyous and heartbreaking, one moment to the next…THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY understands what ultimately powers New Orleans, and therefore, it champions what the American urban experience offers us all in terms of culture, community and ultimately, meaning. — David Simon creator of HBOs Treme, The Wire, Show Me A Hero

“A documentary in the Fred Wiseman mold…sensitive, intelligent and inspirational.” — David Bianculli, Fresh Air, NPR

THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY takes viewers into the heart and soul of New Orleans’s youth marching band community… an inspiring and moving documentary. — Common Sense Media

“THE WHOLE GRITTY CITY is both a celebratory film…and a very emotional one, an at-times heartbreaking portrait of our at-times heartbreaking city.” — Mike Scott, New Orleans Times Picayune

President Preckwinkle Applauds Provident Hospital Connection To Fiber Broadband Network

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle today announced the connection of Provident Hospital to Cook County’s 10 gigabit fiber broadband network. The fiber optic cable connection will allow the transfer of digital communications, including internet, phone and video at much faster rates than currently available at Provident.

The high-speed, secure connection will increase speed by which doctors and specialists can access medical records, test results and radiology reports. It also allows remote viewing of radiology records by the medical staff.

The Cook County broadband network is the result of an intergovernmental agreement with the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA). The agreement allows Cook County to extend the fiber optic lines that follow CTA tracks to County network core sites. From the core sites, the network then extends to dozens of County facilities throughout the region.

“Connecting Provident Hospital to the County fiber network is an important step in building a strong broadband infrastructure for the 21st century,” President Preckwinkle said.  “The Cook County-CTA collaboration is a committed partnership and will provide a positive impact for residents.”

Cook County Commissioner Jerry Butler (D-3rd) whose district includes Provident Hospital said, “I am proud to see that we continue to invest in technological advancements to support high quality, advanced medical care.”

The new fiber optic cable will help in network and data center administration, including electronic medical records, health information exchange and tele-medicine.

Labor Day Message from IDOT, Police: “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over”

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Roadside safety checks, nighttime driving patrols part of life-saving effort

SPRINGFIELD, IL – The Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), Illinois State Police (ISP) and hundreds of local police and sheriff’s departments across Illinois are reminding motorists that they will be out in force this holiday weekend, the culmination of a two-week crackdown on impaired drivers. The message and warning remains very simple: “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.”

Last year in Illinois, 16 people were killed in traffic crashes during the Labor Day weekend, the period between 6 p.m. Friday and 11:59 p.m. Labor Day. The purpose of this enforcement campaign is to deter drunk drivers and prevent fatalities by increasing enforcement and maximizing awareness in an effort to save lives.

Illinois roads continue to be much safer than they were a decade ago. Motorists are buckling up at a higher rate than ever before, achieving a record 95.2 percent seat belt usage by front-seat occupants this year. Traffic fatalities remain on a steady decline. Traffic fatalities reached 1,363 in 2005. Last year, 924 people were killed, the sixth consecutive year fatalities failed to reach 1,000.

Despite these improvements, drunk drivers still play a role in more than 300 highway deaths and even more serious injuries each year in Illinois, with recent data causing additional alarm. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates show drunk driving fatalities (motor-vehicle deaths involving at least one driver with a blood alcohol concentration of .08 or higher) reached 322 deaths in both 2012 and 2013, compared to 278 in 2011.

“We are encouraged by the fatality reductions we’ve seen on Illinois roads in recent years, but we cannot be complacent,” said Jared Thornley, IDOT’s Director of Traffic Safety. “The fact is more than 900 people die each year on Illinois roads and, all too often, they die as a result of an impaired driver.”

Throughout the Labor Day weekend, ISP, Illinois Secretary of State Police and more than 250 local police departments and sheriff’s offices will conduct roadside safety checks and hundreds of hours of stepped-up impaired driving and seat belt enforcement details.

“For many, Labor Day weekend is the last opportunity for family and friends to spend time together before the start of the school year,” stated ISP Col. Mike Zerbonia. “Alcohol remains a factor in one-third of fatal traffic crashes. Please be responsible this holiday weekend and don’t drink and drive, don’t drive distracted, watch your speed and buckle up. This weekend doesn’t need to be the last time your family and friends see you alive.”

The crackdown, funded by federal traffic safety funds administered by IDOT, is coupled with an online media campaign, “The Driving Dead.” The web-based series features Illinois native and “The Walking Dead” star Michael Rooker living in a zombie-filled, post-apocalyptic world and depicting the dangers of unsafe driving. Fans can view the series at The Driving Dead and follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Celebrates Faith Community at Annual Prayer Breakfast, VaShawn Mitchell and Rev. Dr. Otis Moss, III to Headline Event

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

Sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company

WASHINGTON, D.C. -Stellar award-winning gospel singer VaShawn Mitchell will perform and Rev. Dr. Otis Moss, III will deliver the keynote address at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Incorporated (CBCF) Annual Prayer Breakfast, Saturday, Sept. 19, at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington D.C. The Miles College Choir will also perform.

The Prayer Breakfast, the penultimate, signature event of the 45th Annual Legislative Conference (ALC), draws roughly three thousand attendees each year. Interactive One will livestream the event for the second year in a row on NewsOne.com.

“The Prayer Breakfast is unique in that it brings our conference guests together in the spirit of worship,” said A. Shuanise Washington, president and chief executive officer of the CBCF. “The Breakfast provides an opportunity for thoughtful reflection and is welcomed respite from the very important work that occurs during the ALC. We are especially thankful for our title sponsor, The Coca-Cola Company, and the Radio One Family for their continued support of this uplifting event.”

VaShawn Mitchell is one of gospel music’s shining stars. His 2010 album, “Triumphant” rose to the top of the charts. “Billboard” magazine declared the album’s single, “Nobody Greater,” the most played gospel song of 2011, and named Mitchell the top Gospel Radio Artist of the same year.

Dr. Otis Moss, III is the senior pastor of Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago, IL, and an accomplished author, speaker, and activist. He published his first book, “Redemption in a Red Light District,” in 1999. His sermons, articles, and poetry have appeared in various publications.

For the last three decades, the Prayer Breakfast has been the inspirational high note of the ALC. Past guests include Richard Smallwood, Marvin Sapp, Anthony Brown and Group Therapy, and Rev. Dr. Calvin O. Butts, III.

Proceeds from the Prayer Breakfast benefit the CBCF’s many programs and initiatives. To purchase tickets and register for the ALC, visit cbcfinc.org/alc.


The ALC is the leading policy conference on issues impacting African Americans and the global black community. The ALC features more than 70 public policy forums on health, education, economic empowerment, the environment, civic engagement, and the Exhibit Showcase. Signature events include the National Town Hall, Celebration of Leadership in Fine Arts, Gospel Extravaganza, Black Party, Prayer Breakfast, and the culminating event, the Phoenix Awards Dinner.

Twitter: twitter.com/CBCFInc#CBCFALC15

Facebook: facebook.com/CBCFInc

Instagram: instagram.com/cbcfinc

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/company/congressional-black-caucus-foundation

Google+: google.com/+CBCFIncorg

YouTube: youtube.com/user/CBCFINC

Periscope https://www.periscope.tv/
(follow CBCF)

Illinois Continues to See Strong Minority and Low-Income Participation on AP Exams

Posted by Admin On September - 3 - 2015 ADD COMMENTS

State’s minority and low-income participation continues to outpace national average, with these groups showing record gains in test scores

SPRINGFIELD, IL— Illinois minority and low-income student participation in Advanced Placement exams continues to exceed the national average, with students showing record gains on these rigorous, college-level tests.

“By working to improve access to AP courses for all students, Illinois schools are helping a more diverse group of students earn credit and/or move into more advanced classes once they enter college,” said State Superintendent of Education Tony Smith, Ph.D. “I appreciate the work educators across the state are doing to include more students in AP.”

Description: 2015 AP College Board Program ResultsIn Illinois, 105,205 students took at least one AP exam in 2015, compared to 99,171 in 2014 and 78,654 in 2011, according to the 2015 College Board Program Results. Twenty-five percent of Illinois AP test takers were low-income students, compared to the national low-income participation rate of 22.1 percent.

Of the state’s 2015 pool of test takers, 28.2 percent were underrepresented minority students. Nationally, this student group made up 26.2 percent of AP examinees. Mexican American students comprised 14 percent of all public school AP examinees in Illinois and 9.4 percent of national public school test takers. The percent of Illinois black AP examinees exceeded the national percentage of 8.3 by more than a percentage point at 9.4 percent.

Statewide, 65.7 percent of AP exam takers scored 3 or higher on at least one AP exam in May 2015. The College Board and the American Council on Education (ACE) recommend that colleges and universities award credit for AP scores of 3 and higher on any AP exam. Last month, Gov. Bruce Rauner signed legislation that requires higher education institutions to accept AP exam scores of 3, 4, or 5 for credit toward degree requirements starting in the 2016-17 school year. According to the College Board, research shows that students who achieve a 3 or higher are more likely to have higher grade-point averages in college, are more likely to earn their college degree on time in four years, and have higher graduation rates. Sixteen other states award college credit statewide or system-side to students who earn a 3 or higher on AP exams, according to the College Board report.

In Illinois, 51.7 percent of Hispanic AP Exam takers scored 3 or higher on at least one AP Exam, while half of the nation’s Hispanic examinees scored at least a 3. The number of Mexican American public school students scoring 3 or higher in Illinois grew by 12.9 percent over last year, while the number of Illinois black public school students earning at least a 3 grew by 7.7 percent from 2014.

Advanced Placement exams measure a student’s content mastery of college-level studies in specific academic disciplines. The College Board’s just-released national report provides data from the 2015 Advanced Placement exam administration.

Other highlights of the 2015 College Board Program Results are:

  • In Illinois, 69,111 students scored 3 or higher on an AP exam in 2015, compared to 65,069 in 2014 and 51,964 in 2011.
  • In Illinois, 5,728 or 4 percent of students from the class of 2015 took the SAT, compared to 6,468 students (4.6 percent) in last year’s graduating class and 7,819 (5.2 percent) in the class of 2011.
    • 17.7 percent of Illinois SAT takers were underrepresented minority students, compared to 16 percent in 2014 and 14.5 percent in 2011.
    • 4,538 or 79.2 percent of SAT examinees in the class of 2015 met the SAT College and Career Readiness Benchmark

  • In 2014, 62,098 Illinois students took the PSAT/NMSQT, compared to 58,648 in 2013 and 60,457 in 2010.
    • 12,863 (62.5 percent) 10th-grade PSAT/NMSQT takers in 2014 were on track for college readiness
    • 26,166 (67.2 percent) 11th-grade PSAT/NMSQT examinees in 2014 were on track for college readiness.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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