AUSTIN, Texas -- Business and public education leaders are once again calling on the state to spend more on its public schools.
• State’s per-student funding has gone down since 2008
• 71 percent of Texas voters support the state spending more on public education
The debate comes as the Commission on Public School Finance continues to work toward a new school finance plan for Texas. The commission is made up of lawmakers and education experts and will make recommendations to the 86th legislature.
Tuesday, the Texas Education Grantmakers Advocacy Consortium held a policy forum, calling on lawmakers to overhaul the way the state funds its school system. Many of the speakers said they want Texas to rely less on local property taxes for school funding, and for the state to increase its share of funding.
A recent survey conducted by the organization found that 71 percent of Texas voters support the state spending more on public education.
"There's more money in the public education system now than in the past, but the cuts per capita that occurred several sessions ago haven't been restored fully," said Sandy Dochen, Corporate Citizenship Manager at IBM.
Those at Tuesday’s forum pointed out the state’s per-student funding has gone down since 2008.
However, others say the state already earmarks a huge amount of its budget for public schools, and that educators need to be more efficient.
"The state spends over half of its general revenue on education from kindergarten through college. That's over $50 billion," said Emily Sass of the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
Meanwhile, the Commission on Public School Finance continues to work toward a new school finance plan for Texas, and will make recommendations to the 86th legislature next year.