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History of the Worst Kind ... Statement on Passage of the Senate Budget

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 4, 2011

CONTACT:
Linda Bridges, 512-638-1166
Rob D'Amico, 512-627-1343

Statement on Senate passage of budget bill:
Texas AFT President Linda Bridges:

Today a majority of our Texas senators joined their House counterparts in helping make history--of the worst kind--while sowing the seeds for a bleaker future for our state. This is the first budget bill in more than 60 years that has not funded new enrollment for Texas public schools. That's 80,000 to 90,000 more students each year streaming into underfunded schools and facing the damage done by the $5 billion plus in public education cuts in this budget.

The Senate budget means our students will have fewer teachers, larger classes, and fewer support services for those most in need. And with this awful budget proposal as its starting point, the Senate majority moves the budget debate toward the even more extreme level of cuts in the horrendous House budget plan--all while leaving $6 billion dollars in the Rainy Day Fund. The consequences of this failure of leadership will be felt for decades unless lawmakers from both houses have the courage to do better.

Texas AFT represents more than 65,000 teachers, paraprofessionals, support personnel, and higher-education employees across the state. Texas AFT is affiliated with the 1.5-million-member American Federation of Teachers.

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