Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Senate budget requires two instructional days but does not fund them

The Senate sent its amended version of the 2010-2012 state budget back to the House yesterday, amid  reports that the Senate version keeps the two added instructional days that the House had cut.

Actually, the Senate budget requires districts to provide those instructional days, but it does not fund them.

State funding comes through the SEEK formula as “Base” and “Tier I” funding. Here’s how the Senate numbers are lower than the House ones:

The Senate version of the budget adds money to one P-12 line item: educators’ health insurance receive $31.3 million more in FY 2011 than the House budget does, and $25.5 million more in FY 2012.

The Senate version cuts every single other P-12 line item. Beyond the reductions to SEEK above, the Senate provides $14 million less for FY 2011 and $55.7 million less for FY 2012 in those other programs.

The Senate version also gives districts special permission to cut costs in ways that are not usually allowed by law, including:
  • Hiring preschool teachers do not meet current certification requirements.
  • Eliminating kindergarten aides.
  • Raising class sizes above the current legal limits
  • Using money set aside for capital improvements (for example, buildings and renovations) for current expenses instead.
In effect, the Senate budget proposes to force districts to fund the two instructional days while providing significantly less funding to cover education costs than the House version (and the House budget already provided lower funding than past state budgets). 

I'll share more on the other cuts later in the day....


  1. If the state needs to cut funds, why not cut the salary of our reps. and senators. A few years ago they got a big raise. Why should the children suffer? When education funding is cut we are cutting the future of our state. Ky has long been at the bottom of the list as far as education goes. Now when we are finally maiking progress, our leaders want to cut funds. That is the kind of thinking that has kept us at the bottom of the list over the years. The only way our state can make progress is thru education.

  2. How would legislators like to have days added to their attendance with no funding? Cut senators' and representatives' funding and appropriate that money to education.

  3. If education spending is on the cutting table, then the pay for legislators needs to be on the the cutting table...at least until the economy gets better....that goes for any benefits they receive too....we should go back to convening the legislature to every two years to save money...when will the legislature start to think 'think out of the box' and become proactive with the future of our children and our state

  4. Currently, the IECE certification allows preschool teachers to serve as both the special education teacher and the regular education teaacher. Preschool IECE teachers are required to develop IEP and develop an inclusive program. Cutting kindergarten assistance will affect the quality ofeducation our kindergarten children receive. I'd like the legislators to try and teacher literacy and math skills to 20+ kindergarten 5 year olds without an assistant to help with classroom management and adaptive skills within the classroom. Shame on our senators for not protected the youngest of our learners in our public education system.


Updates and data on Kentucky education!