The Board of Education Wants $158 Million More

  • Joe Wertz

OSDE / Flickr

Superintendent Janet Barresi wants the Education Department to return to FY 2011 funding levels.

The state Board of Education unanimously approved its $2.4 billion budget request Thursday, a $158 million increase in fiscal year 2012 funding.

The budget includes about $16 million to reinstate $5,000 annual bonuses for teachers who achieve National Board Certification, a program that was suspended in FY 2012 after budget cuts, reported The Oklahoman’s Megan Rolland.

In general, the board wants to return to FY 2011 funding levels, Superintendent Janet Barresi said, according to The Oklahoman.

The 2013 budget is the “smallest increase” the department has requested in recent years, Oklahoma Watchdog’s Peter J. Rudy reported.

Hit the jump to explore the Education Department’s full 2013 budget request.

From The Oklahoman:

Almost half of the budget increase requested — $78 million — will go directly to school districts through the state funding formula based on average daily attendance.

Another $45 million, or roughly 25 percent of the requested budget increase, would go to fully fund flexible health benefits for school districts. The flexible health benefits were underfunded last year, according to some superintendents, forcing school districts to pick up the tab for their employee’s health insurance.

Superintendent Janet Barresi also requested $9.2 million to fund remediation for students who fail state exams. Remediation received $7.6 million in 2012, The Oklahoman reported.

Funding for adult education programs would be restored to 2011 funding levels — $2.3 million. And there was a $1 million requested increase in funding for incentives for Advanced Placement programs in schools.

The department’s budget must be approved by lawmakers during the next legislative session.