LANSING — An updated and expanded version of the School Aid budget passed the House today after House Democrats fought to see key changes made reflecting the priorities of everyday Michiganders, including an increase to special education funding and an increase in flexibility in the use of “at-risk” funds. In response, state Rep. Jewell Jones (D-Inkster), who voted for the budget, issued the following statement:

“While this budget provides a small and desperately-needed funding increase for our public schools, I can’t help but see missed opportunities. I appreciate both sides of the aisle coming together in the end and taking a step toward preventing a shutdown, but I cannot shake the feeling that if all parties had been willing to adopt this bipartisan spirit much earlier in the process we could have done far better for Michigan students. We must remember that an investment in public education is an investment in our children and our future.”