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Senate Passes Short-Term Spending Bill Flat-Funding K-12

The U.S. Senate just passed a spending bill that would freeze funding for most K-12 programs at fiscal year 2010 levels until April 8. The bill—the sixth short-term funding extension in the current budget wrangle—now goes to President Barack Obama for his signature. More background here.

The measure, approved 87-13, gives the Democratically-controlled Senate, the administration, and the Republican-controlled U.S. House of Representatives more time to work out a longer-term spending bill for the remainder of fiscal year 2011, which ends Sept. 30.

House Republicans have sought to cut K-12 spending, in part because they are skeptical that more money equals better student outcomes, and to get the nation on a firmer fiscal footing. President Barack Obama said earlier this week that he doesn't want to see any further cuts to education.

The latest extension contains no new K-12 cuts, but does nothing to restore education programs slashed under the most recent stopgap measure, which eliminated a number of high-profile literacy programs.

The two sides will have to come to some kind of overall budget agreement, or there still could be a government shutdown.

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