Special Session Debate on School Funding Continues

December 10, 2003 - Posted at 8:48 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - Some debate in a special legislative session on public school overhaul is focusing on whether to attach strict spending guidelines to state funds or let school districts determine how to use the money to meet education standards.

That was the hot topic yesterday in a joint meeting of the House and Senate education committees.

Senator Jim Argue, chairman of the Senate Education Committee, denounced the state's school administrators for not embracing a funding proposal that includes stricter requirements for how school districts can spend state money.

Argue emphasized his point by reading from a state Supreme Court decision declaring Arkansas' public school funding system unconstitutional.

But Charles Knox of the Arkansas Association of Educational Administrators says the proposed new method of distributing money to schools does not allocate enough money and does not give school districts enough flexibility in spending state money.

(Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)