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RALEIGH, NC (AP) — North Carolina’s elected public schools cheerleader is on Capitol Hill describing the effect on education if Congress fails to restructure broad budget cuts coming at the end of the year.

Superintendent of Public Instruction June Atkinson testified to a Senate subcommittee Wednesday with a Texas school superintendent and others.

The spending cuts were agreed to last summer by congressional Republican leaders and President Barack Obama. Congress is scrambling to come up with a way to avoid automatic cuts in domestic and military programs of $1 trillion over a decade.

Atkinson says 16 percent of North Carolina’s education budget comes from federal funding. She says the cuts would hurt reform efforts in five programs, affecting more than 200,000 students and potentially costing 600 jobs.

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