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Governor Malloy clashes with legislature over education funding

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March 31, 2012

Connecticut

HARTFORD, Connecticut: The Appropriations Committee of the Connecticut State Legislature has once again clashed with Governor Dan Malloy, recommending a much smaller budget than he requested for his education reform agenda. Earlier this week, the Education Committee also approved a bill which turned many of his recommendations into studies.[1]

Malloy had asked for $22.9 million to be used to help improve up to 12 of the state's lowest-performing schools. The majority of the money would have gone to increasing pay for teachers and principals in an attempt to attract the best staff, and to possibly get teachers to work longer school days or years. The committee only recommended $10.8 million. He also proposed increasing charter school reimbursements by $2,600 for each enrolled student and suggested opening three new charter schools. The committee increased funding by $1,100 instead, and decided against opening any new charter schools.[1]

The committee also decided to invest far less in a teacher evaluation program. These evaluations were the core of Malloy's plan, which would help decide tenure, pay, and dismissal decisions. However, the committee approved $4 million for the evaluation program, while the governor requested $12 million.[1]

Committee co-chair Toni Walker said that a gradual implementation of the evaluation program makes more sense. "We put all that money in there and it's going to take some time to roll that out."[1]

Malloy responded to the decision of the Education Committee to study many of his proposals before implementing any by stating, "To those who say we can wait, I respectfully say you're wrong. We can't wait."[1]

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