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Tennessee School Budget Proposal

MTN Reporter Caitlin Able

7 February 2020

Governor Bill Lee delivered his State of the State address to the Tennessee General Assembly on February 3, outlining a proposed budget increase with allotments for education, rural development, and public safety.

This budget proposal aligns with his campaign promises outlined in his “Ten for Tenn”, which included public education improvements.

“Make no mistake: we will do whatever it takes to make Tennessee the best state in America to be a student,” Lee said in his address. “And that means making Tennessee the best state in America to be a teacher.”

The proposed budget allows for $117 million to be set aside for public schools, equating to a pay increase of approximately 4 percent, raising the average salary to $36,000.

Higher education also came under review, and Middle Tennessee State University’s operations will be affected should the budget be approved.

The state would provide $49.1 million towards the construction of an academic facility for the Applied Engineering programs at MTSU, alongside $7.1 million for improvement projects across campus, including elevators and sewer systems.

The 3+4 partnership with Meharry Medical College would be granted non-recurring funding of $1.2 million to set aside as financial aid for medical education students within the program.


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