Utah’s Budget Surplus Impacts Education

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Good news came to Utah Schools when Governor Herbert announced an $85 million surplus in Utah’s budget. He says a portion of that will go to education. State Representative Ken Sumsion says the money could be a major boost to Utah schools.

“A huge push from the legislature has been technology in the classroom and in our schools, there are a lot of line item programs related to that and there’s certainly very many one time uses in there that you could see 40 million dollars applied to do that,” says Sumsion.

Provo High is one of many schools in Utah that are feeling the pressure of less money in the classroom. In classrooms like Brian Fredrickson’s class money means materials.

“One thing we talk about is we learn to do and then we do to learn. And I think that is a big factor for them. If they can do it they learn a lot better that is basically a lot of the students that I get. They are more aesthetic learners.”

Technology may do the trick for classrooms, but Sumsion made it clear that the legislature will not put the money in places that will need more funding later; this is a one-time infusion.

Sumsion went on to say,”You will see the legislature be very judicious to not create an ongoing program that no longer has funding or hire new teachers for certain programs and then not have the money available in two years.”

The Utah legislature will vote on the spending in January when their new session kicks off. Sumsion says Education will be one of the first things on their agenda.

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