Capitol Recap

Alaska Ramps Up Education Funding

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| Alaska | Funding for K-12 education in Alaska won an increase in this year’s legislative session, which wrapped up April 19.

The legislature allocated $1.14 billion for K-12 education for fiscal 2011, up from $1.03 billion in 2010, out of a total general state fund of $5.14 billion.

Gov. Sean Parnell
10 Democrats
10 Republicans
18 Democrats
22 Republicans

Legislators in the state also passed a bill that will award merit scholarships to students who complete a more rigorous curriculum than outlined by graduation requirements. Depending on their grade-point-average, students who complete the rigorous course of study can earn anywhere from $2,378 to $4,755 per year toward tuition at an in-state college, university, or career and technical school program.

The Alaska Merit Scholarship program will begin with the high school class of 2011, and a task force will be established to identify long-term sustainable funding for the program.

The bill is currently awaiting signature from Gov. Sean Parnell, a Republican who took over the office after former Gov. Sarah Palin resigned on July 26, 2009. He is expected to sign it into law.

Vol. 29, Issue 31, Page 28

Published in Print: May 12, 2010, as Alaska Ramps Up Education Funding
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