(105 ILCS 5/7-2a)
(from Ch. 122, par. 7-2a)
(b) Any school district with a population of less than 5,000 residents or an enrollment of less than 750 students, as determined by the district's most recent fall enrollment counts as posted on the State Board of Education's website,
shall be dissolved and its territory annexed as provided in Section 7-11 of this Code by
the regional board of school trustees upon the filing of a petition adopted by resolution of the board of
education or signed by a majority of the legal resident voters of
the district seeking such dissolution. No petition shall be adopted or
signed under this subsection until the board of education or the
petitioners, as the case may be, shall have given at least 10 days' notice
to be published once in a newspaper having general circulation in the
district and shall have conducted a public informational meeting to inform
the residents of the district of the proposed dissolution and to answer
questions concerning the proposed dissolution. The petition shall be filed with
and decided solely by the regional board of school trustees of the region
in which the regional superintendent of schools has supervision and control, as defined by Section 3-14.2 of this Code, of the
school district being dissolved.
The regional board of school trustees
shall not act on a petition filed by a board of education if within 45 days
after giving the first notice of the hearing required under Section 7-11 of this Code a petition
in opposition to the petition of the board to dissolve, signed by a
majority of the legal resident voters of the district, is filed with the
regional board of school trustees. In such an event, the dissolution petition is dismissed on procedural grounds by operation of law and the regional board of school trustees shall have no further authority to consider the petition. A dissolution petition dismissed as the result of a valid opposition petition is not subject to the limitation on successive petitions as provided in Section 7-8 of this Code, and a new petition may be filed upon receipt of the regional board of school trustees' notice stating that the original petition was dismissed by operation of law.
For all petitions under this Section, the legal resident voters must be determined by the official voter registration lists as of the date the petition is filed. No signatures may be added or withdrawn after the date the petition is filed. The length of time for signatures to be valid, before filing of the petition, may not exceed 6 months. Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary contained in the Election Code, the regional superintendent of schools shall make all determinations regarding the validity of the petition, including, without limitation, signatures on the petition. Any party who is dissatisfied with the determination of the regional superintendent regarding the validity of the petition may appeal the regional superintendent's decision to the regional board of school trustees by motion, and the motion must be heard by the regional board of school trustees prior to any hearing on annexing the territory of a district being dissolved.
If no opposition petition is timely filed, the regional board of school trustees
shall have no authority to deny dissolution requested in a proper petition
for dissolution filed under this Section, but shall exercise its
discretion in accordance with Section 7-11 of this Code on the issue of annexing the
territory of a district being dissolved, giving consideration to but not
being bound by the wishes expressed by the residents of
the various school districts that may be affected by such annexation.
(Source: P.A. 99-657, eff. 7-28-16; 100-374, eff. 8-25-17.)