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Governor Whitmer Signs Record School Aid Budget
July 20, 2023
LANSING – Governor Gretchen Whitmer today signed a record-setting state School Aid budget for Fiscal Year 2024 (FY24) that extends investments in per-pupil funding, more equitable categorical funding, and early childhood education.
“In the 30 years since Proposal A to change the school funding system, Michigan hasn’t had two years of back-to-back funding increases close to FY23 and FY24,” said State Superintendent Dr. Michael Rice.
"With this record School Aid budget, we are taking a significant step towards fulfilling our commitment to providing every child in Michigan with an equitable and excellent education,” said State Board of Education President Dr. Pamela Pugh. “From Detroit to Watersmeet, these investments will push Michigan towards a comprehensive and inclusive educational ecosystem that empowers all our students to thrive."
The new budget includes a five percent, $458 per pupil increase in the state’s foundation allowance to $9,608 per pupil and large percentage increases for students with disabilities; economically disadvantaged students; and English learners.
“There is so much to celebrate in this budget,” Dr. Rice said, noting Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) flexibility and additional funding to help achieve universally accessible preschool, universal school meals, big increases for students with disabilities and English learners, an opportunity index for the funding of economically disadvantaged students, tutoring for children who are behind in reading and math, transportation reimbursement, and funded mentoring of new teachers, counselors, and administrators.
Dr. Rice praised the governor and state legislature for funding many of the recommendations that MDE and others in the education community had promoted over the last few years, especially in the areas of adequate and equitable school funding, including different funding associated with educating students with different needs (Goal 8 of Michigan’s Top 10 Strategic Education Plan); teacher recruitment and retention efforts to help address the state’s teacher shortage (Goal 7); student mental health supports (Goal 3); literacy supports (Goal 2); and early childhood education expansion (Goal 1). Michigan’s State Board of Education approved the Top 10 Strategic Education Plan in August 2020 as the state’s strategic education plan for education.
“We’re not done yet,” Dr. Rice added. “The state can’t make up for multi-billion dollar underfunding in education, identified by the School Finance Research Collaborative study and other research, in just two state budgets, however extraordinary. Compared to other states and relative to inflation, the state underinvested profoundly in public education for many years post-Proposal A, and it will take time for us to address the adverse impact on human and financial resources and to build an education budget and system that fully support our children.”