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Legislators ask, schools answer: #FundingHelpsStudents

For the first time in eight years, Meade USD 226 will have summer school to help struggling students.  The district of approximately 400 students in southwestern Kansas has also expanded pre-school, improved its ability to address the social and emotional needs of young people and added a Career Academy to help students better prepare for […] Read More

2019 Legislative Session and Federal Issues
See KASB ADVOCACY for news and resources for the 2019 Legislative Session. Information includes 2019 Legislative Priorities approved by the KASB Delegate Assembly in December, Weekly Legislative Calendar, Bill Status Summaries and issue papers and other resources related to Federal education and advocacy topics.

Statehouse Video Reports
Follow KASB Facebook for live updates. CLICK HERE for an archive of all recordings to catch up on what you missed!

KASB Staff Blogs
John Heim, Executive Director I’m from Kansas
Mark Tallman, Associate Executive Director Advocacy and Communications Tallman Education Report
Ted Carter, Chief Data Officer KASB Research Blog
Carol Pitts, Assistant Executive Director Marketing and Public Relations Marketing, PR and Communications

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ALERT: House K-12 committee schedules hearing Tuesday on SB 142, which KASB supports

The House K-12 Education Budget Committee has scheduled a public hearing for Tuesday on SB 142, the school finance plan supported by KASB as the best path forward to resolve the Gannon litigation and promote student success. School leaders who wish to submit testimony on SB 142, should send their comments no later than 10 a.m. Tuesday to the committee's assistant, Laura Pryor at laura.pryor@house.ks.gov or contact her at 785-296-3971. The committee meeting starts at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday. Also on the agenda is "final action on bills previously heard." One of those bills that the committee may act on is HB [...]

School funding, tax cuts may be on collision course

Worlds are colliding in the Kansas Legislature. The Kansas Senate last week approved a school finance bill that could be difficult to sustain given tax cuts Republicans have also approved. But Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, may be the one who prevents the collisions. She supports the school finance bill, SB 142, and has criticized SB 22 and will likely veto it. SB 22 reduces state revenue in the year that starts July 1 by approximately $200 million. It would continue reducing revenue by $140 million the next fiscal year and $145 million the year after that. Most of the benefits of [...]

KASB Daily Education Roundup, Thur. March 14

Two vastly different school finance approaches were debated Thursday and Republican leaders sent Gov. Laura Kelly a tax cut bill that she will likely veto. SB 22 would cut taxes by approximately $209 million in the next fiscal year, with about two-thirds of the cut going to corporations. The bill would also benefit some individuals who itemize and reduce the state sales tax on food from 6.5 percent to 5.5 percent. Kelly, a Democrat, issued a statement saying the bill would “undo all the progress we’ve made.” Kelly has said she wants to hold off on tax cuts for a year [...]

KASB Daily Education Roundup, Wed. March 13

House Republican leaders on Wednesday fast-tracked a newly revealed school finance plan that KASB and other education groups will oppose. KASB has provided a review and summary of the bill. Here is a KASB Live you tube video on the measure. “We think it would actually move us farther away from resolving the Gannon lawsuit,” said KASB Associate Executive Director Mark Tallman. House K-12 Education Budget Committee Chair Kristey Williams, R-Augusta, made HB 2395 public on Tuesday, held an informational hearing on the 81-page bill Wednesday and scheduled a public hearing for Thursday with testimony from opponents due by 10 a.m. Thursday. Williams [...]

House introduces two-year school finance bill with extensive policy changes; informational briefing today

The House K-12 Budget Committee will hold an informational briefing on a new school finance bill, HB 2395, at 3:30 p.m. today. A public hearing on the measure has been scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Thursday and Monday before the committee and then the committee has scheduled Tuesday through Thursday for final action.  Testimony is requested to be filed by 10 a.m. Thursday (March 14). Here is a link to a KASB summary of the bill. Based on KASB’s review, it contains the following provisions. KASB is continuing to study the bill.  School Finance – Response to Gannon  The Kansas Legislature has [...]

KASB Daily Education Roundup, Tue. March 12

KASB is keeping its eyes on a new school finance bill and two major pieces of legislation pending before the full Senate. An informational briefing on HB 2395, which includes caps on cash balances and private school vouchers for victims of bullying, has been scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Wednesday before the House K-12 Education Budget Committee. The measure limits district cash balances to 15 percent of the general operating budget and contains proposals that have been included in several other bills considered this session. Some of those include allowing victims of bullying to receive vouchers to attend private schools, allowing computer [...]

Blue Ribbon Task Force on Bullying announced by commissioner

Kansas Education Commissioner Randy Watson on Tuesday announced the formation of the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Bullying. Watson said bullying is one of the main issues he hears from parents and educators as he travels around the state visiting schools. “Everywhere I go, parents want to discuss this. There are no easy answers,” Watson said. Twenty-eight percent of students in grades six through 12 say they experience bullying, he said. Watson said bullying now also follows students home because of social media. The task force will be co-chaired by Rick Ginsberg, dean of the University of Kansas School of Education, and James [...]

KASB Daily Education Roundup, Mon. March 11

The House Education Committee on Monday considered SB 128, which requires schools to conduct nine safety drills each year. The committee may take action on the bill Tuesday. SB 128 came about after the Legislature added a proviso in this year’s budget that required 16 safety drills, including 9 crisis, or shooter-type, drills. With 16 required drills, schools have been conducting an exercise nearly every 10 days, which takes away from instruction time and has caused some students to experience trauma, according to school officials. Education leaders and the Kansas Fire Marshal’s Office agreed that nine drills — four fire, three [...]

Slow session heats up as school funding, tax cuts advance

After a fairly slow first half of the 2019 session, legislators returned for the second half last week and advanced several major bills while teeing up some more education-related measures to advance this week. For an in-depth review of last week and a preview of this week, go to KASB Live video or podcast. A powerpoint presentation on legislative developments is also available on the KASB Key Resources page. And please follow KASB on social media for the latest developments. Last week, the House approved its version of tax cuts and the Senate Select Committee on Education Finance recommended approval of [...]