Whitmer proposes $61.9 billion budget with boost in school funding

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has proposed a $61.9 billion state budget, including what she says would be the biggest increase for Michigan classroom operations in 20 years.

The plan unveiled Thursday would boost overall spending by 3.9%.

The Democrat proposes increasing base per-student funding by $225, or 2.8%, for most schools.

She also proposes a $60 million boost for special education and a $60 million increase for academically at-risk and economically disadvantaged students.

The Democratic governor also wants to provide up to $250 in reimbursement to teachers who buy their own classroom supplies.

Whitmer again is seeking funding for her proposed Reconnect program to provide tuition-free community college or technical training to nontraditional students age 25 and older who don’t have an associate’s or bachelor’s degree.

Public universities and community colleges would see modest 2.5% funding increases under the blueprint that will next be considered by the Republican-led Legislature.

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