Education Minnesota slams Senate budget proposal as inadequate, immoral

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ST. PAUL, Minnesota. May 13, 2019 – The majority caucus in the Minnesota Senate presented a budget proposal Monday that would drain money from the state’s health care access fund, which serves low-income Minnesotans, to increase the state’s investment in E-12 public education. 

Education Minnesota President Denise Specht promptly criticized both the size of the proposed increase in the E-12 budget and the method of paying for it.

“When we live in a wealthy state, in the most affluent nation in the world, there is absolutely no moral justification for stealing the health care from some Minnesotans to invest a little more in the education of other Minnesotans,” Specht said. “The investment in education is too small in this proposal and the method of paying for it is contrary to every value Minnesotans voted for in 2018. The Senate leadership must do better for the people of Minnesota.”

Earlier this year, Education Minnesota released its definition of fully funding E-12 public education, including reducing class sizes so students can get individual attention, bringing the state’s ratio of counselors to students in line with national standards, giving every 4-year-old access to a high-quality pre-K program, raising educator pay and reducing educators’ education debt. The cost was $3.7 billion to $4.3 billion for the biennium. 

About Education Minnesota
Education Minnesota is the voice for professional educators and students. Education Minnesota’s members include teachers and education support professionals in Minnesota’s public school districts, faculty members at Minnesota’s community and technical colleges and University of Minnesota campuses in Duluth and Crookston, retired educators and student teachers. Education Minnesota is affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers, National Education Association and AFL-CIO.