Arizona schools are facing a spending cap disaster. How did we get here?

By Lauren Gilger
Published: Tuesday, January 31, 2023 - 12:04pm

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Anyone paying attention to the Arizona education news lately has probably become familiar with a rather clunky phrase that has tremendous implications for Arizona schools: the aggregate expenditure limit.

Arizona schools are facing this spending cap now. In fact, if lawmakers don’t act by March 1, schools won’t be able to spend the money lawmakers have allocated to them — something even Arizona's new, conservative Superintendent Tom Horne warned would be devastating for schools.

“The great bulk of the budget of a school district is personnel. So we would be talking about massive layoffs of teachers and the half of teachers who are left, unable to handle the number of students that parents had sent to be educated. It would be an incredible disaster,” Horne said recently.

So how did we get here? Who is to blame?

The Show sat down with Rachel Leingang and Hank Stephenson of the Substack newsletter Arizona Agenda to find out.

Rachel Leingang and Hank Stephenson
Rachel Leingang, KJZZ
Rachel Leingang and Hank Stephenson.

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