Author - Andrea Hartzell

School boards now have new options to elect officers and set meetings

Substitute for Senate Bill 130 has become law by publication in the Kansas Register on April 25, 2019. This bill revised several statutes, but, most notably for our members, it revised K.S.A. 72-1133 and K.S.A. 72-1138 on electing a president and vice president of the school board and on setting regular board meeting dates and times, respectively. These tasks, traditionally done in the first organizational meeting in July, are now to be completed in the first meeting of the board on or after the second Monday in January of each year, or at a later meeting during that calendar year...

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Leadership for Tomorrow class learns powerful lessons in southeast Kansas

By Leah Fliter, lfliter@kasb.org KASB’s Leadership for Tomorrow program visited Coffeyville and Neodesha in May for powerful lessons about school redesign, community partnerships, and change theory. More than 200 school board members, superintendents and administrators have participated in LFT over the past 13 years. Visits to local schools, classroom observations and presentations provide a foundation for class discussion and analysis of issues and opportunities in Kansas education. Class members explore change theories and strategies, gain training in leadership skills and expand their understanding of education key issues for effective governance and raising student achievement. `Empathy education’ in Coffeyville Coffeyville USD 445 is one...

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State officials gathering information to form early childhood strategic plan

By Scott Rothschild, srothschild@kasb.org When it comes to providing early childhood education and health care, the earlier the better. That’s why Kansas officials are holding public meetings to gather input on what early childhood services are available in communities across the state and how improvements can be made in the quality of and access to those services. The goal of the “community engagement sessions” is to put together a statewide plan that covers all facets of the early growing years — learning, health care, child care, family resources and many other areas. Once a plan is put together, it will be aired out...

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KASB 2019 Annual Conference Call for Presentations open

Apply online at www.kasb.org/CFP2019 Deadline: July 12, 2019 The KASB Annual Conference is the association’s flagship event, providing intensive learning and networking experiences that bring together hundreds of Kansas board of education members, school district leaders and content experts. KASB is seeking engaging, creative and thoughtful submissions from KASB MEMBERS for the 2019 Annual Conference. The 60-minute presentations will be given on Saturday, December 7. At least one quarter of the program should be devoted to questions and answers. In designing your program, consider using any one of the following formats: single speaker, panel, or some other program structure. If there is more...

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KASB offers`insurance with a purpose’

By Leah Fliter, lfliter@kasb.org What if your school district could protect itself against risk AND give back to public education? KASB’s Risk Management Group products offer precisely that opportunity. “We like to call our work ‘insurance with a purpose,’” says Risk Management Group Director Rod Spangler. “Every dollar districts spend on our products goes back out to support student success. No one in this market is in service to education like we are.” KASB for decades has offered districts workers’ compensation, property casualty and student accident insurance. With the recent addition of Employee Benefit Solutions, Spangler says the organization has the capacity...

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Kelly wants review of state tax structure; Education leaders should be involved

By Scott Rothschild srothschild@kasb.org Gov. Laura Kelly says she wants to examine the state tax structure during the interim period before the 2020 legislative session with an eye toward producing a revenue collection system that provides long term stability. Since half of the state budget goes to K-12 funding, an examination of state taxes is something that school leaders should provide input on and follow closely. The stability in Kansas taxes that Kelly seeks has been missing from the Kansas tax system for the past decade. Like most states during the Great Recession, state tax collections in Kansas fell off a cliff in...

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President’s Perspective: Thanks to those who supported SB 16

by C. Patrick Woods KASB President Topeka USD 501 Greetings fellow board members.  I write you today having witnessed the signing into law of SB 16, the 2019 School Finance package.  The bill commits an additional $90 million per year for Kansas schools over the next five years to account for inflation, which was not provided for in the five-year school finance package that was passed in the previous legislative session. When I wrote in January, I argued it was entirely possible for the state to promptly resolve the school finance question because of actions the Legislature had taken the previous year to...

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LFT class hears from two Gemini districts

By Scott Rothschild, srothschild@kasb.org & Carol Pitts, cpitts@kasb.org During the first session of KASB’s 2019 Leadership for Tomorrow class, class members learned about the diversity of Kansas school districts and ways to make informed, reasonable decisions that will affect student success. As part of a get-to-know-you exercise, the class of 27 board members and administrators from across Kansas lined up from smallest enrollment district to largest; then from smallest to largest district in area and from the district with the lowest poverty rate to the one with the highest rate. The exercise showed the variance in Kansas’ 286 districts. Members also noted...

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BOLD class learns ABCs of bond issues

By Scott Rothschild, srothschild@kasb.org Bringing a school bond issue to a successful public vote and then carrying through with the construction projects requires years of planning and expert assistance. That was the message from education, financial, architecture and construction leaders to KASB’s BOLD class of school leaders recently. “There is a lot of time and energy that goes into a bond issue,” said Basehor-Linwood USD 458 Superintendent David Howard, whose rapidly growing district has had two approved bond issues since 2015. Howard said to win voter approval, school districts must enlist the help of community leaders to explain the needs of the district...

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KASB making several staffing changes

The KASB Board of Directors recently announced several staff changes that will take effect July 1. Brian Jordan, who is currently head of Leadership Services, will become Deputy Executive Director. Doug Moeckel, the current Deputy Executive Director, will continue as a Leadership Services Field Specialist. Two new staffers are joining KASB. They are Sue Givens, who is currently superintendent of El Dorado USD 490, and Britton Hart, who is the current principal of Emporia High School, Emporia USD 253. Givens will take over as a Field Service Specialist for Leadership Services, replacing Craig Wilford, who is retiring. Hart will join as Director...

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