Education

Dec 19, 2013 6:47 PM by AP

State funding short for public school formula

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - If current public school enrollment holds, Gov. Bobby Jindal and lawmakers didn't set aside enough money to pay for the state's public school financing formula.

More students showed up in schools this year than were estimated in the formula payment.

Barry Landry, a spokesman for the Department of Education, said Thursday the state operating budget included money for 681,000 students. But Landry says the latest enrollment count taken in October showed 8,500 more students in classrooms.

That could leave lawmakers with a budget hole to fill.

The education department wouldn't release a shortfall estimate. Superintendent of Education John White says budget adjustment requests will come after the February student count.

Gaps in formula financing are a near-annual occurrence in the state budget, because the payment is based on enrollment estimates.

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