Lawmakers turn to education funding

(December 23, 2003) - (Little Rock-AP) -- Legislators are to hold a hearing today on how to change the way money is distributed among public school districts. A bill by House Speaker Herschel Cleveland is scheduled to be before the House Education Committee. The measure would add 305 million dollars to school coffers next year, and add 807 million dollars within three years. The state is under an order to make school funding adequate and equitable and has a January first deadline in place to present the plan. The House and Senate have approved different plans for improving the schools. The Senate plan would consolidate smaller school districts. The House plan would keep small districts intact.