The Kansas House and Senate reconvene this afternoon after negotiations stalled last week on both a compromise tax plan and the state budget. A new issue emerged in budget negotiations Thursday evening when Senate Ways and Means Committee leaders proposed a “proviso” that would prohibit either the state or school districts from spending any state money to “implement” that Common Core academic standards.
The House members of the budget conference committee did not respond to the proposal before scheduled committee meetings were cancelled Friday morning. No further meetings have been announced. In addition, the Senate has not yet formally responded to a House offer made last week that would keep half of the 0.6 cent sales tax due to expire on June 30 in place, and accept deeper income tax rate cuts in phased in through 2018. The Senate has expressed concerns about the long-term impact of that plan on the state budget.
On Friday, KASB issued a joint letter with United School Administrators of Kansas and the Kansas National Education Association opposing the Common Core proviso. The State Board of Education last week issued a fact sheet on the Common Core. Also Friday, KASB presented a special webinar explaining the controversy over the Common Core, questions and concerns about the proposed proviso, and other background information. You can access those materials here.
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