JULY 24th MINUTES – Policy, Program and Finance Committee Meeting


Members of the State Task Force Policy, Program and Finance Committee and Staff. Public is welcome to attend.


July 24th, 2018

2:30 PM


Conference Call: (888) 330-9549
Access Code: 230540#


  1. Call to Order
  2. Roll Call
  3. Review and approve minutes from June 7 meeting
  4. Review hearings from June 25 (South Suburbs) and July 19 (Peoria)
  5. Discussion about program, policy, and finance research
  6. Other
  7. Adjourn


In attendance on call:  Jack Wuest, ASN, Cynthia Levi, YCCS, Sheila Venson, YCCS, Andrew Wells, Chicago Urban League, Caitlyn Barnes, ICCB, Reyahd Kazmi, NYAP, Jennifer Simmons, Senator Chuck Weaver’s Office, Karina Ayala-Bermejo, IDPL, Sen. Chuck Weaver

NOT in attendance on call:  Paul Vallas, Amrit Mehra, Thrive, David Whittaker, CAP, Karrie Rueter, Leslie Glotzer, Thrive

  1. Call to order
    1. Motion to call the meeting to order: Reyahd makes the motion to call the meeting to order.
    2. Seconded: Sheila seconds
    3. All in favor
    4. Meeting called to order
  2. Roll call
    1. Jack Wuest, ASN
    2. Cynthia Levi, YCCS
    3. Sheila Venson, YCCS
    4. Andrew Wells, Chicago Urban League
    5. Caitlyn Barnes, ICCB
    6. Reyahd Kazmi, NYAP
    7. Jennifer Simmons, Senator Chuck Weaver’s Office
    8. Karina Ayala-Bermejo, IDPL
    9. Senator Chuck Weaver
  3. Review and approve minutes from June 7 meeting
    1. Motion to approve the minutes: Reyahd makes the motion to approve the minutes.
    2. Seconded: Jack seconds
    3. All in favor
    4. Minutes from June 7 meeting approved
  4. Review hearings from June 25 (South Suburbs) and July 19 (Peoria)
    1. June 25: Aunt Martha’s organized; it was a good turnout. Panel of 4 or 5 local municipal mayors; Will Davis and Kelly Burke showed up. Will is the key architect on the school evidence based model program and Kelly is a chair for higher ed in the House. Video footage of the event is being sent to Grace from Aunt Martha’s.
      1. Need for transportation, need for more programming.
      2. Young people said they needed support for issues of trauma
      3. Similar to what we had seen in Granite City.
      4. Get summary from Kenny Martin-Ocasio.
    2. July 19: Hearing in Peoria organized by Kathleen Kelly and Senator Chuck Weaver. Four panels and 70 people in attendance. A wide-range of people, some involved in literacy, young people, etc.
      1. After each panel there was open discussion with the audience.
      2. Young people discussed small programs that had helped them come back to school and be re-engaged. Young people described their struggles and how important it was to have personal connections to stay focused and to stay in programs to completion.
      3. President of community college expressed that they had 30 calls or contacts from small businesses from the area because they cannot find workers. This confirms what we’ve thought from the state and nation.
      4. Senator Weaver had 2 PowerPoints – one showed the up and down of the economy and in the near-depression from 2008 to present, there has not been much recovery in terms of employment for youth.
      5. Try to get video from Facebook livestream of the event to put on the Task Force website.
    3. May 14: Granite City organized by Reyahd Kazmi and Debbie Valencia. Attended by close to 70 people.
      1. A diverse amount of people: kids who had been employed through an internship program; a group of students involved in their school district – sophomores and older – an entrepreneurship club.
      2. Construction and trade employers spoke.
      3. Youth were not recognizing all of the different organizations that provided
        opportunities – there was no communication between organizations, schools, and young people.
      4. Employers from St. Louis came over – expressed they’d be interested in hiring youth from Madison County.
    4. Upcoming hearings – August 7 in Mt. Vernon (Kathy Lively and Lisa Jones), September (3 rd week) in Rockford (Kerry Knodle).
  5. Discussion about program, policy, and finance research.
    1. Senator Chuck Weaver: A group of youth working and training for leadership and civic projects in Peoria. One group is looking at vacant lots and community farming.
    2. Our strategy is to go through this list of research and compile information for the end of August/early September. It will give ideas for policy, financing, and programming at city, state, and national levels.
    3. Regulations for a process for programs that offer high school diplomas. Goodwill Excel Academies are charter schools, and they get attendance funding for people over 21 to be in the high schools. We are looking at this as an example, looking for other programs using similar funding streams.
    4. Senator Chuck Weaver: Followed up with 4-5 key people at the hearing and had dinner.
      1. Collective impact model – get a group of people together, on-going for input; communicating across groups
      2. Skills gaps
      3. How do we do aptitude interest assessments earlier in a student’s life?
  6. Other – n/a.
  7. Adjourn
    1. Motion to adjourn: Jack makes a motion to adjourn
    2. Seconded: Caitlyn seconds.
    3. Meeting adjourned
  8. Next meeting: Thursday, August 30, 2:30pm