Safety and Security

Hearing on private school special ed services; new bills on transportation aid, bullying policies

The House Education Committee has tentative scheduled a hearing on HB 2484, which would require school districts to provide a sign language interpreter, Braille materials, and assistive technology to students attending private schools in the private school setting.  Currently, the public school gets to decide where these services will be provided after consultation with the parent and with the private school officials. The bill would likely increase the cost of providing these services, but there is no provision to increase state aid to cover these costs.  Rep. Melissa Rooker, R-Fairway, has introduced HB 2561, which would amend the Kansas school equity [...]

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Impact of Kansas welfare reforms on children discussed

Welfare restrictions enacted by Gov. Sam Brownback have had a “causal effect” on the increase in child abuse and placement of children in foster care, the author of a Kansas University study said Tuesday, but an official with the Kansas Department for Children and Families disagreed with the study’s conclusions.  The KU study and Brownback administration’s position were presented Tuesday to the House Children and Seniors Committee.  Starting in 2011, Brownback and his Republican allies in the Legislature enacted a series of changes to the major cash assistance program — called Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) — that reduced the [...]

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KASB Live at 12:30 p.m. today to cover Dennis, numerous other education issues

KASB Live at 12:30 p.m. today will cover developments at a State Board of Education meeting to discuss Deputy Education Commissioner Dale Dennis in addition to numerous education issues that popped up during the third week of the session.   To join the KASB Live discussion, go to this link.  Other topics that will be discussed include Gov. Sam Brownback’s impending resignation, a hearing on teacher due process, career technical education, foster care and mental health issues.   

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Hearing postponed on bill on student transportation

A committee hearing on HB 2485, which requires transportation of certain students when no safe pedestrian route is available, has been postponed.  The bill, introduced by Rep. Sean Tarwater, R-Overland Park, would require districts to provide transportation to students living less than 2.5 miles from their school if no safe route is available.  The bill is designed to be cost-neutral to districts, exempting them from its provisions if adding the additional stops would cost the district more money. The bill was scheduled for a hearing in the House Education Committee on Thursday but that hearing and the committee meeting have been [...]

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Appropriations Committee hears legislative mental health report

In the latest sign of the importance of mental health in Kansas, the House Appropriations Committee this morning heard the report of the Legislative Mental Health Task Force. The appropriations committee is spending the early days of the 2018 session hearing reports as it prepares to discuss state agency budgets and how to fund them.  In June 2017, the Kansas Legislature passed a budget that included a proviso directing the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services (KDADS) to establish an 11-member task force to review the mental health system in Kansas. The task force was instructed to assess the [...]

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KASB Live will review Week 3 of session on Friday

KASB will review the third week of the legislative session at 12:30 p.m. Friday.  To join the KASB Live discussion, go to this link.  KASB staff will review developments as legislators tackled teacher issues, children’s welfare and much more.   

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KASB Special Edition: New Day for Kansas Education: How schools are using new resources

by Dayna Miller KASB President Basehor-Linwood USD 458 Kansas educators have one goal — the success of each student. And with new resources recently provided by the state, Kansas teachers and staff are tending to pent-up needs and preparing for the future.< KASB is proud to tell their stories in a new publication: “New Day for Kansas Education.” The edition is filled with reports based on conversations with school officials in which they talked about their dreams for their students, the challenges they face and the opportunities ahead. What goes on every day in Kansas public schools is special. Here are some examples of [...]

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Committee hears foster care, child welfare reports; new chair pledges efforts to protect children

The House Children and Seniors Committee on Tuesday heard reports on foster care and child welfare. The committee’s new chairwoman pledged to redouble legislative efforts to protect children.  Communities in Schools of Mid-America Executive Vice President of Strategy and Services Kelly Stanford briefed the committee on the organization’s work with Kansas school districts to provide resources and support to students and families to keep children from being placed in foster care due to neglect. Stanford told the committee CISMA’s four-year-old project in the southeast Kansas communities of Pittsburg and Chanute has helped elementary school students stay in their homes despite [...]

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Hearings scheduled on teacher due process and busing for safety

The House Education Committee has scheduled hearings on a bill to restore teacher due process procedures for teachers who had "tenure" when the law was repealed in 2015, and a bill requiring districts to provide busing to students living within 2.5 miles from schools in certain circumstances.  On Wednesday, the committee will hear HB 2483, which would restore the former due process system, allowing a hearing before an independent officer, to any teacher who holds a certificate and been continuously employed as a teacher by the same school district since July 1, 2014 and who would have already obtained tenure [...]

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KASB Live at 12:30 p.m. today to talk about Week 2 of legislative session

Education was front-and-center during the second week of the legislative session and KASB will conduct a live update at 12:30 p.m. today to review those developments.  To join the KASB Live discussion go to this link.  During the week, Kansas Education Commissioner Randy Watson briefed legislative committees and there was more discussion of Gov. Sam Brownback’s budget, including his K-12 funding increase, and the possible fiscal impact of those proposals.  Legislators also discussed KPERS issues and the need to increase mental health and childcare services.  KASB Live will also provide a look at what is expected in the coming week.   

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