Bement, Mt. Zion and Cerro Gordo School Districts included
Three local school districts have received funding from the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) for the maintenance and upkeep of educational buildings.
ISBE has distributed the 2022 fiscal year School Maintenance Grants totaling $30 million in state funding to more than 600 eligible applicants.
The School Maintenance Grant Program is a dollar-for-dollar state matching grant open to school districts, cooperative high schools, vocational centers, and special education cooperatives. Eligible applicants can receive up to $50,000 to put toward completing proposed maintenance projects.
Bement and Mt Zion School Districts received $50,000 in grant funding and Cerro Gordo received $30,000.
“By investing in our educational infrastructure, we set Illinois students up for success,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Our state’s youth spend a majority of their days inside school buildings. It is our duty to make sure those facilities are safe, clean, well-lit, and adequately ventilated. With this funding, our children will learn and grow in sustainable, healthy environments-as they deserve.”
Applicants must be able to match awarded funds and commit to completing proposed projects within two years of dispersal to qualify for ISBE School Maintenance Grants. Funds must be used exclusively for the maintenance or upkeep of educational buildings, but applicants are given the freedom to submit projects that involve multiple types of work for a single building or a single type of improvement for several buildings.
“Each and every student in Illinois deserves access to safe and healthy facilities that support their well-being and academic growth,” said State Superintendent of Education Dr. Carmen I. Ayala. “School districts across the state have significant facilities needs. We learned from the pandemic how important ventilation is to preventing the spread of disease. These grants can help schools make necessary upgrades to make buildings safer, healthier, and more energy efficient so they save taxpayer dollars in the long run. We are grateful to the General Assembly and the governor for the funding for these critically important School Maintenance Grants.”
School Maintenance Grants are awarded in order of five priorities:
1. Emergency projects made necessary by a disaster;
2. Health/life safety projects to remodel or improve an existing structure;
3. State priority projects necessary for energy conservation or to better serve students in an area where the applicant receives funding under Illinois School Code;
4. Permanent improvement projects designed to upgrade building systems (e.g., HVAC, plumbing);
5. And Other.