Senate panel focuses on funding of public education

AUSTIN — The Texas House Democratic Caucus on Feb. 21 announced its “Texas Kids First” education-funding package that would include allday pre-kindergarten, teacher raises and retirement and property tax reform.

“We hope to work with our colleagues to incorporate some of these ideas into their bills,” said Rep. Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie, caucus chair.

Caucus member Rep. Gina Hinojosa, D-Austin, a former Austin Independent School District board president, said Texas rates 42nd in the nation in per-student funding. She said Texas public school students are funded $2,300 per year below the national average.

The proposed funding package is embodied in several bills that caucus members have filed or are in the process of filing, and would add some $14.5 billion more in baseline budget estimates. Items to be covered include:

 

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