Republican lawmakers have been bragging on the campaign trail about increasing school spending. Meanwhile Democrats are demanding a special legislative session to reverse the first cut in per-student spending for the first time in at least 50 years.
Which one is right depends on the perspective. The Legislature did put an additional $1.5 billion in the Foundation School Program. But that is only one part of state spending on public education. Lawmakers cut $1.55 billion elsewhere and rewrote the school funding formula to cut $4 billion.
Texas per student spending is about $8,900 per year, a $538 drop compared to the last budget.
So far the state's Republican leadership has refused to call a special session to increase the funding, despite having $7 billion in the Rainy Day Fund.