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“We’re not arguing at all that the money should come to us at the expense of schools that have needs,” she said. But parents might send students elsewhere if class sizes rise too far. “I do think that families are going to be paying close attention,” she said. “I think that if class sizes increase dramatically, there would be some choices to be made.”
Losing families could also undercut support for voter renewal of the district’s excess levy referendum in 2016. But Bates asked why the district’s southwest schools can’t do well if the formula costs them money, suggesting that schools in nearby suburbs get good results with less money per student than Minneapolis.
Mammen said he thinks tighter budgets could create incentives for greater efficiency at some schools, and expressed dislike for comparisons of southwest against North Side schools under weighted funding.
“Pitting people against each other doesn’t help,” he said.
Steve Brandt • 612-673-4438
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