House Committee Hears About School Spending Plan

FEBRUARY 22, 2006 - Posted at 8:09 a.m. CST

JEFFERSON CITY, MO - A special House committee hears testimony on a watered-down plan to get Missouri schools spending more on student instruction.

The panel took no action following discussions on the measure yesterday.

Governor Blunt in November proposed requiring school districts to spend at least 65 percent of their operating budgets on student instruction.  Instruction is defined as such things as teacher salaries, textbooks, athletics and art.

But the legislation instead just directs districts to set a goal of spending two-thirds of their budgets on instruction.

Still, various superintendents and education groups oppose the bill.  They say decisions are best left to school boards, and that student performance matters more than a spending target.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)