School Finance Issues

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A coalition of civil rights groups is urging lawmakers to give improving Texas schools a higher priority than slashing property taxes.

The group presented its "Fair Funding for Kids Plan" yesterday in anticipation of a special legislative session set to start April 17th.

Coalition members say changing demographics and the differences between rich and poor school districts make changes to education even more important.

More than half of Texas' four-point-four (m) million children come from low-income families. Educating those low-income students and English deficient ones costs more, and their numbers continue increasing each year in Texas.

Yet school funding experts say the funding gap between rich and poor school districts has grown to about one-thousand-dollars per child.

The 21-member coalition is led by the Southwest Voter Registration and Education Project and the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational.