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Education

Florida Lawmakers Closing In On School Funding Agreement

Senate Education Chairman John Legg said lawmakers may discuss ways to make state financial aid depend more on classes and less on test scores.
Senate Education Chairman John Legg said lawmakers may discuss ways to make state financial aid depend more on classes and less on test scores.
Senate Education Chairman John Legg said lawmakers may discuss ways to make state financial aid depend more on classes and less on test scores.
Credit Zack Mccarthy / Flickr
The Senate has proposed a 3 percent increase in school spending, but will the House accept?

Florida lawmakers are getting closer to a budget deal that will add more money for schools.

Florida schools would get $207 more per student if the Florida House agrees to a Senate education budget, or $7,097 per pupil.

That’s not as much as the $7,167 per student Gov. Rick Scott wanted -- and promised on the campaign trail last year. But it’s still an increase -- even with state schools adding 15,000 more students next year.

The House and the Senate still have several education-related items to work out.

The House wants to offer incentives to districts which require school uniforms -- and the Senate may agree.

The Senate also wants to expand a voucher program for students with disabilities. Students could use the money for tuition, tutors, therapy or other educational expenses.

And the Senate wants to limit the number of four-year degrees offered by state community colleges.

It’s unclear whether the House supports those ideas.

Lawmakers are in the second week of a 20-day special session to finish the state budget. The new budget year begins July 1.

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