SPRINGFIELD – State Senator Rachel Ventura led a new measure through the Senate that would require school districts to provide resources and services for special education students who do not have a guardian.

“Everybody deserves an education that provides them the resources they need to succeed,” said Ventura (D-Joliet). “This measure was crafted to advocate for special high needs education students who do not have a guardian to petition schools to provide resources for them. We cannot leave these students to fend for themselves if they need a specialized school to meet their needs so they can succeed.”

House Bill 4581 would require the school district where a special education student’s parent lives to provide adequate services and resources they need. The legislation was brought to Senator Ventura and Representative Michelle Mussman after a student who had no legal guardian was denied services by their school district and was forced to move to another state.

“Here in Illinois, we are committed to providing the best education and support system to help our most vulnerable students succeed. Sometimes, that setting is a residential facility outside of their own school district. This measure corrects a gap in the law about student residency rules so that if a student turns 18 before finishing the school year, their out-of-district placement won't be interrupted unnecessarily,” said State Representative Michelle Mussman (D-Schaumburg). “This bill is designed to provide continuity to high-need students who are going through critical academic, behavioral, and emotional transitions in highly specialized settings.”

House Bill 4581 passed the Senate on Wednesday and now heads to the governor for further consideration.