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Education Department wants guidance from attorney general on funding cut for small schools

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PHOENIX — State education officials want formal legal advice on how to implement reductions in funding provided to schools with small enrollments.

Charter schools complain that the cuts will be onerous, and the Arizona Capitol Times (http://goo.gl/xM3k2t ) reports that the Education Department plans to ask the Attorney General's Office for a formal opinion on the reductions.

The Legislature earlier this year approved a reduction in a school funding provision called the "small-school weight," and at the time the reduction in the upcoming fiscal year was estimated at $6.5 million.

However, the department has since estimated that the cuts will be close to $15 million in the 2015-2016 fiscal year, followed by $24 million and $32 million in the next two fiscal years.

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