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Legislative News and Views - Rep. Liz Olson (DFL)

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RELEASE: Minnesota House Expected to Approve E-12 Education Budget

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

St. Paul, Minn. – This evening, the Minnesota House of Representatives is expected to approve a new E-12 education budget that makes honest investments in every student in every public school. The budget is inspired by parents, students, teachers, staff, and administrators who have told legislators that current funding levels are not adequate.

“I’m proud today to support our E-12 education bill with overdue investments that will help ensure all students can receive the quality education they deserve,” said Rep. Jen Schultz (DFL – Duluth). “Underfunding of education has put future learning opportunities for Minnesotans at risk. The investments we’re making today aren’t just for the children currently attending our schools, but will strengthen the future of our entire state.”

“Minnesotans value having excellent schools so all students can have the opportunity to succeed, and as lawmakers, we have the responsibility to invest in them,” said Rep. Liz Olson (DFL – Duluth). “From early education opportunities, to full-service community schools, to significant funding increases, our DFL E-12 budget will help ensure all children can meet their full potential.”

The House DFL E-12 education budget includes $900 million in new investments and would:

  • Increase the per-pupil funding formula by 3% in the first year and by another 2% in the second year of the biennium. For Duluth Public Schools, this will mean an additional $3.06 million in the first year and an additional $2.6 million in the second year of the biennium. The bill also includes additional special education funding for Duluth to address the federal government’s failure to meet its commitment in this area.
  • Keep students, teachers, and staff safer while in school. 
  • Address Minnesota’s special education funding shortfall.
  • Protect access to voluntary Pre-K programs for 4,000 children.
  • Let schools hire additional student support staff, such as licensed counselors, psychologists, social workers, and nurses.
  • Give schools more tools to recruit and retain more teachers of color.
  • Expand students’ ability to earn college credits and develop skills through career and technical education programs.

The House DFL E-12 education budget also includes policy reforms that will:

  • Improve Minnesota’s teacher licensure system.
  • Reduce special education paperwork.
  • Keep students safe through comprehensive sexual education and consent training.
  • Require school districts to test for lead and radon.

 After the Minnesota House and Senate approve their respective E-12 education budgets, lawmakers from each chamber form a conference committee to reach agreement on a final version.