As Michigan schools begin their new budget year this week, some local superintendents are urging lawmakers to return from their summer break to boost education funding.
Gov. Rick Snyder signed a new education budget last week that boosts funding for all public schools by at least $50 per student. But Forest Hills Schools Superintendent Dan Behm says districts face new costs that wipe out that minimum increase.
“Over half-a-million children will receive less money next year than they did this year,” Behm told reporters Tuesday. “And that impacts our classrooms. And that’s unacceptable in a time of budget surplus.”
“The net effect for (those) classrooms … is that there will be $10 less per student next year compared to this year.”
The governor’s office points out only the highest-funded schools, like Forest Hills, will get that minimum increase.
“So, the high-revenue districts received $50 per pupil. The districts who are trying to play catch-up – which is a majority of districts – received $175 per pupil,” said Dave Murray, a spokesperson for Gov. Snyder.
Murray was not able to comment on whether some schools will see overall decreases when new costs are factored in.