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Alex Yalen

Alex Yalen is a junior journalism student covering K-12 education for the Missouri News. Ultimately, he would like to be a non-fiction writer. For more of his work, please check his website alexyalen.net.

Stories by Alex Yalen include:

4/ 6/2004: Newspaper Story - April 15 will be an especially key date for a House budget plan currently under consideration. Earlier in the year, the House, Senate, and Gov. Bob Holden agreed the state should expect about $6.4 billion in revenue, but the new House budget plan utilizes about $7 billion in revenue. But that difference won't be known until the mid-April deadline, said State Budget Director Linda Luebbering. She did not rule out the Republican figures outright, saying there was not enough information at this
  • 5/14/2004: Newspaper Story - Administrative officials in Missour's House and Senate estimated that the two branches of government combined used roughly six million sheets of paper during the session. That number, though, pales in comparison to the yearly totals.
  • 5/14/2004: Newspaper Story - When it comes to Missouri education policy, what the General Assembly didn't do this session may turn out to be more important than what it did. Namely, the legislators failed to revise Missouri's $2.4 billion Foundation Formula, the key school aid funding mechanism.
  • 5/12/2004: Newspaper Story - Last September, UM system president Elson Floyd added a new system-level position that Knorr was asked to fill. Previously, Knorr's focus was on lobbying the federal government in Washington, D.C. Now, in his current $95,900 per year job, he oversees all UM system lobbying efforts -- federal and state.
  • 5/ 5/2004: Newspaper Story - Key supporters of a higher education bond said Wednesday that the legislation appears to be headed for a legislative death. The University of Missouri system would recieve about $195 million from the bond; MU would get about $90 million of that for construction of a health science center on campus.
  • 4/28/2004: Newspaper Story - A multi-hundred million dollar bond, slated for higher education "life science" construction projects statewide, took a step forward Wednesday evening when the Senate gave the bill first-round approval. Although winning preliminary approval, several provisions were added on that could cause the bill to face strong opposition in the House.
  • 4/19/2004: Newspaper Story - Rod Paige addressed Monday an audience of between 200 and 300 people at Rock Bridge High School in Columbia, Mo. Paige, and a panel of five other education experts had a town hall meeting -- including two superintendents and a representative from Missouri State Teachers Association -- which focused on recent changes to No Child Left Behind education law
  • 4/ 7/2004: Newspaper Story - The House passed an $18.6 billion budget Wednesday that provides a bigger increase for educatin than the governor reccomended -- without tax increases. The budget was passed on the same day that the Revenue Department released numbers showing that state revenue collections are up significantly.
  • 4/ 7/2004: Newspaper Story - State education officials said Wednesday that increased local support through property taxes, as a result of Tuesday's statewide voting, could increase funding inequities. The problem lies in the formula itself, which rewards local funding effort with more state aid.
  • 4/ 5/2004: Newspaper Story - With over one hundred school districts asking their residents to approve increased taxation Tuesday, the public school funding debate could be significantly altered.
  • 3/29/2004: Newspaper Story - While there are many legislators who have served on school boards, only a few of the state's 197 lawmakers have actually taught as liscenced teachers in a Missouri classroom. Though state government is their second career, many of these teachers-turned-lawmakers describe it as the next logical step in a lifetime of passion for, and commitment to, public service.
  • 3/29/2004: Newspaper Story - A multi-hundred million dollar bond bill to fund construction of scientific research-related buildings throughout the state was almost doubled in size Monday night by the Senate Appropriation Committee, which approved the bond issue.
  • 3/10/2004: Newspaper Story - The Senate Appropriations Committee decided Wednesday that they needed more time to review the projects in question. Most of the projects, including a renovation to the engineering building on the MU campus and the construction of a major life-science research center, involve the UM system.
  • 3/ 3/2004: Newspaper Story - Leading University of Missouri system officials testified in front of the Senate Appropriations Committee Wednesday afternoon, encouraging senators to approve a $190.4 million bond issue for buildings. The UM leaders are angling for parts of a bond that would fund various life-science related construction projects.
  • 3/ 1/2004: Newspaper Story - Stashed away in a school district's annual budget is a fund that, ideally, should never be touched.That fund, known as a district's "reserves," is designed to help a public school district survive a year, maybe two or three, of financial difficulty.
  • 2/23/2004: Newspaper Story - State education officials said Wednesday they feared that local school board choices would impact Missouri's compliance with the federal No Child Left Behind Act, which determines how much federal aid Missouri receives.
  • 2/18/2004: Newspaper Story - Rep. Jeff Harris, D-Columbia, and Rep. Chuck Graham, D-Columbia, introduced an amendment to a House education appropriations bill that would move all state funding for the MAP tests to Missouri's state aid distribution formula. That would allow individual school districts the option of how -- or whether -- to finance the administratin of the exams.
  • 2/17/2004: Newspaper Story - Monday's rally for more public school money was met Tuesday by a House appropriations bill that would effectively hold steady state aid distribution to public schools.
  • 2/16/2004: Newspaper Story - Though unschooled in the detailed art of school finance -- many didn't know what the Foundation Formula was, or how much money was being thrown around -- the roughly 2,000 young protesters chanting "Save our Schools!" on the steps of Missouri's Captiol were quite clear on what was at stake: their educations.
  • 2/16/2004: Radio Story - Governor Bob Holden told state superintendents he still won't release withheld money for public education.
  • 2/12/2004: Newspaper Story - The Joint Committee on Education Funding approved a new philosophy of delivering state aid based on "student need." The current system provides money based on local tax wealth.
  • 2/ 2/2004: Newspaper Story - The University of Missouri's new policy prohibiting sexual-orientation discrimination would be effectively outlawed under a measure before Missouri's legislature.
  • 1/29/2004: Newspaper Story - A deal that would give the Universtiy of Missouri roughly $200 million for building construction fell through Thursday morning on a technical ruling.
  • 1/28/2004: Newspaper Story - Would allow Southwest Missouri State University to change name to Missouri State University. The UM System would recieve a bond to help fund construction of various projects.
  • 1/26/2004: Newspaper Story - A Missouri legislative panel was told Monday that it could take nearly $1 billion to "adequately" fund Missouri schools.
  • 1/21/2004: Newspaper Story - Partisan rancor marked Gov. Bob Holden's State of the State Address Wednesday, as his education, job, and revenue plans all fell under heavy assualt from Republican leadership. The program he announced was essentially the same as the program he put forth last year, with a continued emphasis on a tax increase to help fund Missouri's public schools.
  • 1/15/2004: Newspaper Story - A House and Senate bill to rework various components of Missouri's MAP testing regimen will help allow schools to meet a federal standard that is actually lower than the goal Missouri educators set for themselves.
  • 1/14/2004: Newspaper Story - An experiment with humor at the expense of current Secretary of State and gubernatorial candidate Matt Blunt garnered few laughs Wednesday morning.
  • 1/13/2004: Newspaper Story - The House Rules Committee sent to the full House a resolution to block the governor's order to let unions take fees from non-union state government workers.
  • 1/12/2004: Newspaper Story - The lawsuit, filed last week, asserts that the state's complicated public school funding formula is neither equitable nor adequate in its distribution of state funds.