Communities that value education enable both its individuals and businesses to thrive. A good education system is the foundation for stability and growth because it draws residents and businesses to the area. One of the major factors that determine potential residential and business locations is the quality of educational opportunities provided to the residents.

Our county is served by many great public school districts (District 87, Unit 5, serves the urbanized area of Bloomington and Normal) as well as numerous private schools. Our primary and secondary education system contributes to our reputation as a “family-friendly community.” Providing learning and growth opportunities for our youngest citizens sets them on the path toward success.  

Higher Education has been a foundation piece of McLean County’s history. In 1857, the Illinois State Normal University—which became Illinois State University—was established in the village of North Bloomington. Since then, higher education has grown with the founding of Heartland Community College, Illinois Wesleyan University, and Lincoln College. Higher education institutions shape our economy and culture in myriad ways, both direct and indirect.

And that’s why McLean County Regional Planning Commission takes great care in highlighting the role of education in comprehensive and land use planning. This is critical to the health of neighborhoods and the community as a whole. This kind of planning is the bedrock for coordination between all parties.

Key Education Documents

Town & Gown Chapter from Town of Normal Comprehensive Plan
Town & Gown Chapter from Town of Normal Comprehensive Plan

Town & Gown Chapter from Town of Normal Comprehensive Plan

November 2017
Normal is a college town. Since the establishment of the Illinois State Normal University (now Illinois State University) in 1857 in the village of North Bloomington, Normal’s growth and development have been inextricably linked with that of the University. Today, higher education—not only Illinois State, but Heartland Community College and Lincoln College—remains central to Normal’s success.
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Education Chapter from City of Bloomington Comprehensive Plan
Education Chapter from City of Bloomington Comprehensive Plan

Education Chapter from City of Bloomington Comprehensive Plan

August 2015
Education in Bloomington will continue to be a pillar of the community, enriching our culture and economic competitiveness.
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