Proos: Kids and career tech big winners in education budget

After the Michigan Senate finalized on Wednesday the Fiscal Year 2014 state education budget including a $400 million increase for schools, Sen. John Proos, R-St. Joseph, issued the following statement: 

“Education has always been one of my highest priorities, and this budget increases funding for every student in every Southwest Michigan school at an average of about $214 per student.

“The school aid funding in this budget totals more than $13.4 billion. This is a 3.2 percent increase from last year and the most the state has ever spent on educating our kids.

“By spending more than half a billion dollars to cover school employee retirees who have been promised pensions and health care benefits, this budget will help schools put the increased state aid directly into the classroom — where it can be used to help prepare our children for success.

“We must also be more open to career and technical education (CTE). I have long been a strong advocate for this type of education, and I am proud to see $3 million added for FIRST Robotics and an additional $1 million for CTE centers to integrate the Michigan Merit Curriculum in science, technology, engineering and mathematics areas.”

Editor’s Note – Audio comments by Sen. Proos are available on the senator’s website at Click on “Podcasts.”