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Michigan House approves cuts to education

The state House has approved an education budget that cuts per student funding by 3.5 percent.

The Lansing State Journal reports:

The House proposal would cut the state’s per-student foundation grant by an additional 3.5 percent, cuts ranging from $256 to $297 per student. That’s on top of a $170 per student cut that’s already in place and would be continued into next fiscal year.

Funding for community colleges and universities would be cut by an average of 15 percent under the House plan. Cuts could be deeper for universities if they don’t keep tuition increases in check headed into next academic year.

Last month a Senate appropriations committee approved a $170 per student cut. Gov. Snyder has asked the legislature to approve a cut of $300 per student.

“While this vote is very disappointing, the budget battle isn’t over,” the Michigan Education Association said on its website. The teachers union asked people to contact their representatives to express opposition to the planned cuts.

The Detroit Free Press reports that the House vote followed “seven hours of back room cajoling by Republicans to corral among their own majority the 56 votes needed to pass the school funding bill.”

A Michigan State University survey this month found that education is the service people most want to protect from cuts.

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