Iowa Senate Plans School Funding Vote

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By Rachel Begle

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - State senators are planning to debate a proposal to increase state funding to schools for the 2014-2015 academic year.

On Thursday the Senate was scheduled to vote on the plan. The Legislature is supposed to set school funding more than a year in advance. That didn't happen last year, so the Democratic-controlled Senate has already passed a bill that would increase funding for the coming school year by 4 percent.

Democrats have been at odds with Gov. Terry Branstad over education. Branstad is encouraging legislators in the Republican-majority state House to approve his education reform plan before discussing general school funding levels for the next two school years.

Branstad's plan would boost minimum teacher pay and offer incentives to teachers who take on more tasks.

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