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House panel proposes 7.7 percent cut to schools

Gov. Rick Scott's budget called for a 10 percent cut to the state's education budget -- so the 7.7 percent cut proposed Tuesday by a Florida House panel sounds like (relative) good news.

But it sure won't look that way for schools.

"That was excruciating," said Rep. Marti Coley, a Marianna Republican and former teacher who chairs the House Pre-K-12 budget subcommittee and released her budget-cutting recommendations Tuesday morning.

Her plan is still just that; the House has not yet determined exactly how much money the education budget will have to work with next year. Yet Coley's proposals suggest where the steep cuts will be coming from: any program outside the classroom.

And even then, per-student funding -- the money the state sends school districts based on their student population -- will take a hit. "I don’t believe were going to be able to maintain that per-student funding," Coley said.