The Missouri legislature approved a $22.4 billion fiscal 2009 budget last week that includes an additional $130 million for K-12 education. That represents a 2.5 percent increase over this year’s school funding allocation.
Most of the additional money will go toward school districts’ general operating budgets. An additional $2.5 million, however, has been set aside to expand early-education programs. The legislature also put an added $3.5 million toward the A+ Schools Program, which awards scholarships to students from low-performing high schools who want to attend community colleges or career and technical schools.
Although Gov. Matt Blunt, a Republican, praised the budget in a statement, he also said he would have to examine it more closely before determining if he would sign it.