(105 ILCS 5/10-22.22e)
Science and mathematics partnership school.
(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law to the contrary and subject to the provisions of this Section, 2 or more contiguous school districts with all or a portion of their territory located within the geographic boundaries of the same municipality may, when in their judgment the interest of the districts and of the students therein will be best served, jointly operate, through an institution of higher education located in the municipality, a science and mathematics partnership school for serving some or all of grades kindergarten through 8. The partnership school may (i) restrict attendance to pupils who reside within the geographic boundaries of the areas served by the school districts and (ii) select students for enrollment based on admission criteria that focuses on academic proficiency in science and mathematics established by the partnership school and approved by the districts' school boards; however, in no case may the partnership school discriminate on the basis of disability, race, creed, color, gender, national origin, religion, ancestry, marital status, or need for special education services in the establishment of its attendance boundaries or in the selection of students for enrollment. The number of students enrolled from each school district shall be approximately equal in number. If there are more students eligible for enrollment in the partnership school from a school district than there are spaces available, eligible students must be selected by lottery.
(b) The school board of each school district shall, by proper resolution, enter into the joint operation of the partnership school. The school boards of the participating districts shall execute a partnership school contract with the institution of higher education for the joint operation, subject to the provisions of this Section. The agreement for joint operation of the partnership school shall include, but not be limited to, provisions for administration, staff, programs, financing, facilities, and transportation.
(c) Each participating school district shall pay its per capita cost of educating the students residing in the district and attending the partnership school for the maintenance and operation of the partnership school. The manner of determining per capita cost must be set forth in the agreement. Each district shall pay the amount owed under the terms of the agreement from the fund that the district would have used if the district had incurred the costs directly and may levy taxes and issue bonds as otherwise authorized for these purposes in order to make payments.
(d) The teachers and other non-administrative, certified employees who work in the partnership school must be selected according to criteria established by the partnership school and agreed to by the school districts' school boards. The number of such employees selected from each school district must be approximately equal in number. Their selection must be for a 2-year or 4-year period, upon the completion of which they must be assigned to a comparable position in the school from which they were selected. While working in the partnership school, these employees shall remain employees of and be paid by the school district from which they were selected, and their wages and benefits must be the same as if they were teaching or otherwise working in that district, provided that additional wages and benefits may be provided to these teachers and other staff if the participating school districts and the exclusive bargaining representatives of their teachers and other staff agree. The contractual continued service status of a teacher and the retirement benefits of those employees who accept work with the partnership school must not be affected. A school term worked in the partnership school must be considered a school term worked in the school district from which the employees were selected for contractual continued service attainment purposes. The time spent in employment with a participating district by any teacher who has not yet entered upon contractual continued service and accepts selection to work in the partnership school is not lost when computing the time necessary for the teacher to enter upon contractual continued service.
(Source: P.A. 97-97, eff. 1-1-12; 98-786, eff. 7-25-14.)