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Report finds Illinois school finances worsening

Published: Wednesday, March 12, 2014 3:50 p.m. CDT

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — An Illinois State Board of Education report shows more school districts' are in poor financial shape.

The annual profile released Wednesday places school districts into four categories ranging from high financial strength to high risk. The report shows an overall shift from stronger to weaker financial positions.

The state board uses revenue, cash on hand and debt to determine a district's financial position.

Of the state's 862 school districts, about 120 are in the lowest two financial categories. That's an increase of nine from last year. The analysis also showed more than 60 percent of districts have budget deficits.

State Superintendent Christopher Koch says the profiles show the effects of budget cuts on education in recent years.

The education budget faces further cuts as state lawmakers negotiate next year's budget.

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