CHICAGO - Standard & Poor's Corp. yesterday downgraded the ratings on the outstanding general obligation debt of the Chicago Board of Education and its financial oversight authority, citing the board's persistent budget problems and the authority's increased involvement with board operations.

The rating agency lowered the rating to BBB-minus from BBB on $5.6 million of board debt and $1.5 million of Chicago Public Building Commission debt secured by the board. Standard & Poor's also revised the board's rating outlook to stable from negative, removing the debt from CreditWatch, where it had been placed in September.

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