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Ohio Senate Proposes Funding Cuts for Public School Transportation in State Budget

a photo of a school bus
The Ohio Senate's version of the state budget cuts all $45 million in funding for bus purchases. State Sen. Vernon Sykes says changes in funding such as this one will place more of a financial burden on school districts that are already struggling.

Changes to school transportation in the Ohio Senate’s version of the state budget could cause major issues for public school districts.

The Senate cut all $45 million the House had allocated for bus purchases. Public school districts also have to transport students in their district who attend nonpublic schools and pay a stipend to those families if they can't. The Senate increased that stipend substantially.

State Sen. Vernon Sykes of Akron, who sits on the Senate education committee, says these changes will hurt school districts that are already strapped for cash.

Sykes: additional burden on already struggling schools
Sykes and Huffman

“They’re still struggling, and they have been for years. And they will continue to struggle trying to identify and find the dollars to find adequate transportation opportunities for the student population,” Sykes said.

Both the Senate and House versions of the budget also make it harder for school districts to utilize public transportation, such as Cleveland RTA, to transport nonpublic K-8 graders to school.

Abigail Bottar is a junior at Kent State University. She is pursuing a major in political science with a concentration in American politics and minors in history and women's studies. Additionally, Abigail is starting her second semester copy editing for The Burr.