Education budget provides for new teachers, but higher ed looks - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

Education budget provides for new teachers, but higher ed looks stagnant

(Source: WSFA 12 News file photo) (Source: WSFA 12 News file photo)
MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -

The Alabama House changes to the $6 billion education budget were revealed Wednesday morning, including funding for 152 new teachers. The teachers would be for grades 4 through 6. 

According to the Alabama State Department of Education's latest data, there are 137 local school systems with 46,539 teachers, and there are 1,067 elementary schools in the state. 

Budget Chair, Rep. Bill Poole, R-Tuscaloosa, called the budget a modest improvement, especially for K-12 education. 

"The big takeaway is a positive year for K through 12, relative to appropriations in the next fiscal year," said Poole. "So it's not a huge increase, but I think it's an effective increase. I think I'll make a difference and I hope we hit the right priorities so that the dollars will have the greatest impact."

However, the budget for higher education remains stagnant. The Veterans Affairs scholarship has taken up almost every penny available for an increase. As a result, all four year institutions in the state will see their budgets practically unchanged from funding in 2016. 

The budget is expected to be voted on in committee Thursday morning. 

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