In his state of the state address on Tuesday, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton reminded the public that when he campaigned for governor, he promised to increase education funding each year during his tenure in office. His E-12 plan released this past week didn’t miss the mark and he’s proposing the lion’s share of the surplus go into a variety of E-12 programs and needs including:
- $371 million to fund 2&2 on the formula
- $75 million to expand Voluntary Pre-K
- $40 million to improve special education funding
- $68 million to cover the anticipated increase in the employer’s share for TRA solvency
- $20 million to improve Debt Service Equalization
The Governor’s total E-12 spending package tops $600 million out of an available $740 million in the next biennium. This is a significant investment in public education and we need to rally behind the Governor’s proposal.
There are many interests in the Capitol complex who want nothing more than to see this level of E-12 investment shrink. In the weeks and months to come, school leaders, educators and parents need to step forward and defend the Governor’s plan.