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What latest revenue forecasts mean for education

Revenue forecasts released Tuesday by state economists show this year’s budget picture looks much like last year’s – not very promising for Colorado classrooms.

That means, barring unexpected events, 2012-13 will likely be the third straight year of funding cuts for K-12 schools.

Education News Colorado Capitol Editor Todd Engdahl talks in detail about the forecasts and their likely impact on education for this week’s podcast.

Henry Sobanet, director of the Office of State Planning and Budgeting, and Natalie Mullis, the legislature’s chief economist, both noted economic conditions have deteriorated since their June forecasts. Sobanet’s forecast will guide Gov. John Hickenlooper’s budget 2012-13 proposal, due Nov. 1.

Last year, Hickenlooper proposed a $332 million K-12 education funding cut. Lawmakers managed to whittle that down to $160 million using a variety of fiscal devices.

Still, K-12 funding has dropped an average of $610 per student over the past two years, pushing Colorado’s per-pupil funding average to its lowest level since 2006.

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