Edu. budget moves toward House passage

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - A $6.2 billion budget to fund education has moved a step closer to final approval in the Alabama Legislature.

The House Education Appropriations Committee Wednesday approved the budget that uses federal stimulus money to assure that during a recession most education employees will retain their jobs.

But the spending plan cuts funding for popular programs to improve student performance in reading, math and science.

It also cuts all funding for classroom supplies for teachers - items like chalk, paper and crayons.

One legislator, Democratic Rep. James Thomas of Selma, said that means schools will be hosting fund raisers and asking for help from parents to pay for supplies.

The budget passed the Senate Tuesday and will be up for a final vote in the House next week.

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