Illinois schools have an opportunity to compete with other states for $5 billion in discretionary spending available to innovative schools, said U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan during a visit to the state. However, Illinois will need to make some changes first, he said. "Business as usual, to be clear, would basically eliminate Illinois from competition," Duncan said. "But we're not looking just at past track record. We're looking at folks who are really willing to challenge the status quo."

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