Illinois Latino College Landscape Study Webinar

In 2019, less than 20% of Latino adults 25 years and older had a 2- or 4-year college degree, the lowest educational attainment among all racial/ethnic groups. The Latino Policy Forum will work to address systemic issues to address this disparity.

To better understand the educational attainment disparity, the Latino Policy Forum initiated the Illinois Latino College Landscape Study in partnership with the Illinois Workforce and Education Research Collaborative (IWERC).

On May 9, 2023, the Forum and IWERC conducted a webinar on the factors that influence Latinos' college preparation, enrollment, retention, and completion and the status of Latinos along this pathway. Please find the recording of the webinar,... Continue Reading

Posted In: Education

On Saturday, May 27, 2023, the Illinois General Assembly passed a $50.4 billion balanced budget for FY24. The Forum commends the efforts of the Illinois General Assembly and Governor in formulating the budget and recognizing the complex challenges involved in balancing competing priorities. The Forum appreciates the commitment to addressing the needs of Illinoisans.  

Please find below the Forum's  assessment of the budget highlighting strengths and areas that require attention. Overall, the Forum is pleased with key concerns that impact Latino and immigrant families.

  • Substantial investments made in the field of education that span the entire educational continuum.
  • Continued investments in Welcoming Centers, the Access to Justice program, and funding... Continue Reading

SPRINGFIELD - On May 2, 2023, Latino Unity Day returned to Springfield for its annual celebration. 

Community leaders and members of the Illinois General Assembly came together for a day and a half of thought provoking and inspiring panel discussions supporting the Latino community. The day's theme, "Building Illinois: Unidos y Fuertes,” motivated conversations on education, Latino representation, health care, immigration and current legislative action.   

“Latino Unity Day... Continue Reading

The COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to restrict asylum access significantly impacted U.S. immigration policy this past year. The continuation of Title 42, a public health policy invoked by the CDC in March 2020, resulted in nearly two million expulsionsContinue Reading

Posted In: Immigration

Friends and neighbors,

Happy Spring! May the season of new beginnings revive and reinvigorate you.

We at the Forum are revitalized this April as we celebrate 15 years, our quincinera, of building the Latino community's power, influence, and leadership. My continued heartfelt thanks to the generous support of our friends, donors, and the many foundations that see the Forum as a wise investment. Thank you to the organizations, communities and individuals with whom we have been privileged to work with to strengthen the mosaic of Latino families and neighborhoods. 

Speaking of new starts, in a few weeks, Chicago Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson will take office. We, at the Forum,... Continue Reading

By Noreen Sugrue, Director of Research, Latino Policy Forum

The impact of COVID on the Latino community highlights what must be addressed to reset to what some call the new normal where equity is a reality rather than a theoretical ideal or a moral goal. 

Director of Research at the Latino Policy Forum, Noreen Sugrue, outlines how Latinos create their own social safety nets because they often are not afforded access to publicly funded programs.

Continue Reading

With plans to soon retire from her historic post as the first female Latina State Superintendent of Education, the Forum extends deep gratitude to Dr. Carmen Ayala for her tireless leadership and esteemed successes in the face of adversity.

Dr. Ayala has served as the State Superintendent since early 2019, when she was soon confronted with guiding Illinois schools through the difficult COVID-19 pandemic and charged with revitalizing academic improvement for the state. Now at the end of her tenure, Illinois is at a decade-high in its high school graduation rates—a factor driven by a rise in graduation by Black and Latino students. 

... Continue Reading

Friends and neighbors, 

Happy New Year! I wish you all a year filled with love, laughter, and cheer! 

There is plenty for us at the Forum to cheer about…we are celebrating our quinceañera in 2023. Fifteen years of building the Latino community's power, influence, and leadership. It takes a... Continue Reading

Earlier this month, the Illinois Latino Agenda (ILA) convened its first meeting of the “Welcome to Illinois” coalition. The purpose of this new coalition is to provide a space for those responding to the ongoing migrant situation to share information, provide updates, and determine if there are synergies to teamwork.

As of mid-October, Illinois has received over 3,600 asylum-seekers from Texas and Florida. State, city, and local organizations have worked around the clock to meet the immediate needs of these families, providing everything from food and shelter to medical screenings and legal advice. Early on, community organizations expressed a need for coordination of these efforts and a long-term plan to ensure... Continue Reading

The Latino Policy Forum hosted its annual Latinos on the Move fundraiser,Latinos on the Move: Driving Growth In Illinois,on Friday, November 4, 2022.

After two years of hosting LOTM virtually, the event was back in-person at the Union League Club Continue Reading

Friends and neighbors, 

It's heartbreaking to learn about the growing number of victims in Florida due to Hurricane Ian. As rescue crews go door-to-door to search for survivors and help in recovery, I consider myself blessed in that my family is among the lucky ones. My father and his wife, who live in central Florida, sheltered in a hospital for two nights. I waited anxiously, not hearing from them, to learn that in their haste they had forgotten their phone at home.  It was an anxious two nights. I breathed a sigh of relief when I learned that... Continue Reading

By Alaynah Rose Garibay, Senior Consultant Latino Policy Forum and Dr. Rebecca Vonderlack-Navarro, Education Director Latino Policy Forum

Nearly one in four children in Illinois speak a language other than English in their homes. In 2019-20, there were 261,454 students classified as English Learners, roughly 11.7%. In addition, 655 school districts across the state offered English learner instructional programs to support the unique learning needs of those students. 

Until now, there has not been a sustained series of training designed to build the skills of school leaders responsible for student outcomes in those programs. There are unique factors that impact the learning trajectories of English learners over the long term, and administrators... Continue Reading