Lightford050918 4SPRINGFIELD – A proposal sponsored by Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) aims to protect access to child care for working families under the Child Care Assistance Program.

Lightford’s House Bill 5599 sets the eligibility threshold for childcare assistance at no less than 185 percent of the federal poverty level.

In July 2015, Governor Bruce Rauner made cuts to Childcare Assistance Program through administrative rule, lowering the income threshold to 50 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. The cuts left 90 percent of applicants throughout the state ineligible for childcare, decimated the program and caused massive layoffs in the childcare industry.

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Category: News

Lightford050918 3SPRINGFIELD – While obtaining a college degree is increasingly vital to career advancement, low-income, racial minority and first-generation college students often struggle to transition into a college or university’s culture.

A plan led by Illinois Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) that was approved in the Senate Higher Education committee Tuesday seeks to ease the transition into college by allowing Illinois’ public universities to establish bridge programs. These programs would provide access, academic support and financial aid to underrepresented students.

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Category: News

Lightford050918 2SPRINGFIELD – A proposal from Illinois Senate Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) would implement a pilot program to make parenting courses part of the health education curriculum for high school students.

“Parenting education gives young adults a realistic overview of what life is like when you are responsible for another human being,” Lightford said. “It also gives them skills that will hold value in adulthood.”

House Bill 4442 requires the State Board of Education to administer a three-year pilot program providing support to school districts that utilize a unit of instruction on parenting education.

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Lightford050918SPRINGFIELD – Thousands of K-12 students are arrested in Illinois schools every year for minor offenses such as drawing on desks, not participating in class, walking past a fight or having a tantrum caused by separation anxiety or depression.

Assistant Illinois Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood) is working to reverse this trend by proposing legislation to create grant funding for schools to implement evidence-based alternatives to law enforcement involvement for in-school offenses.

“Our children are facing awful lifelong consequences due to the overuse of arrests as in-school disciplinary measures,” Lightford said. “We cannot continue to let children suffer when there are methods available that not only help them deal with their behavioral issues, but increase their academic achievement as well.”

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