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School Funding Under Debate

Governor Rick Snyder’s recommendation to increase school aid spending by $75 per pupil is being rejected by key GOP lawmakers.

The Republican chair of the Senate K-12 budget committee Geoff Hansen wants to increase spending for schools at the lower end of the scale and take money away from richer schools at the top.

Hansen wants to pass the so-called 2X formula whereby more money goes to the poorer districts. He argues that the fair thing to do is to close the funding gap between districts.

The proposed 2X formula means that schools in wealthier districts would get $41 per student while poorer districts would get $82.

East Lansing Democratic Representative Sam Singh says he understands there is a $800-$900 gap between the rich and poorer districts but he contends you can’t close the gap on the back of those districts that are doing well.

The governor endorsed the 2X spending plan this year, but he did not put it in the budget for next year, so its unclear what the increase will be for those schools and whether Snyder will fight the efforts by other Republicans to change his original proposal.

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