- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 24, 2017

HELENA, Mont. (AP) - Lawmakers are considering a bill that seeks state funding for 19-year-old high school students.

Currently, Montana only funds students who are age 18 or younger at the start of the academic year. Democratic Rep. Jean Price of Great Falls introduced her bill Monday. The House Education Committee heard testimony in favor, but did not take a vote.

Lee Newspapers of Montana reports the measure would allow schools that choose to enroll 19-year-olds to receive the same per-student funding it receives for younger students. Officials estimate it would cost about $530,000 over the next two years.

Some school districts allow students to stay in school past the age of 18, but pay for that instruction with local funds.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen, a former state senator from Billings, voted against a similar bill in 2015.

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