Published Online: April 1, 1998

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Legislative Update

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The following are summaries of governors' budget requests for schools and highlights of proposals on the state education agendas. Budget totals for K-12 education include money for state education administration, but do not include federal flow-through dollars.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Governor:
David M. Beasley (R)

FY 1999 proposed state budget:
$5.67 billion

FY 1999 proposed K-12 budget:
$2 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$1.89 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+5.8 percent

Estimated enrollment:
649,200

Highlights:

  • Governor's budget includes $15 million to implement grade-by-grade standards in mathematics, science, English, and social studies, as recommended by state commission on standards.
  • Also includes funds for all 10th graders to take practice exams for SAT or ACT.

SOUTH DAKOTA

Governor:
William J. Janklow (R)

FY 1999 proposed state budget:
$731.26 million

FY 1999 proposed K-12 budget:
$284.63 million

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$273.47 million

Percent change K-12 budget:
+4.1 percent

Estimated enrollment:
134,209

Highlights:

  • Under governor's proposal, $2.3 million would be dedicated to school technology.
  • State would provide at least $3,551 in per-pupil funding for districts. Small districts--those with fewer than 600 students--would receive 20 percent more than that in per-pupil foundation aid from state. Seventy-two percent of South Dakota's districts meet state's "small" definition.
  • Gov. Janklow also wants $9.5 million for children's health-care package that would provide aid based on family's poverty status.

VERMONT

Governor:
Howard Dean (D)

FY 1999 proposed state budget:
$753.4 million

FY 1999 proposed K-12 budget:
$658.26 million

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$231.96 million

Percent change K-12 budget:
+183.8 percent

Estimated enrollment:
103,500

Highlights:

  • This is first year of Vermont's statewide property tax, which was implemented under Act 60, school-finance-reform law passed last year. Act 60 eliminated local property taxes, replacing them with statewide tax aimed at distributing per-pupil funding equitably to all districts. It boosted state's contribution to education significantly.
  • Gov. Dean proposes spending an additional $280,000 for student-level assessment program that will report individual scores on state's assessments in early reading, English/language arts, math, and science. Some money will go to develop new assessment in history and social studies. The governor proposes spending nearly $1.9 million overall on assessments.
  • In response to recent drunk-driving accidents involving teenagers, governor wants to allot $200,000 for programs to discourage teenage drug and alcohol abuse.

WISCONSIN

Governor:
Tommy G. Thompson (R)

FY 1999 state budget:
$9.9 billion

FY 1999 K-12 budget:
$4.48 billion

FY 1998 K-12 budget:
$4.26 billion

Percent change K-12 budget:
+5.2 percent

Estimated enrollment:
890,000

Highlights:

  • Biennial budget passed last year requires all districts to adopt state's new academic standards or set their own by next fall.
  • Budget includes $4.74 million in 1998-99 to reduce class sizes in kindergarten through 3rd grade.
  • Under a new public school choice program, students may apply to attend any school in Wisconsin. Schools are scheduled to send out acceptance letters this month.

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