Instruction & Services

Task force hears numerous ideas to reduce bullying in schools

Focusing on restorative justice, social and emotional health of students and early childhood learning were some of the ideas touted Tuesday to address bullying behavior. Educators and others discussed ways to reduce bullying at the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Bullying, which met in Garden City at Horace Good Middle School. “We’re starting to come together,” said Rick Ginsberg, task force co-chair and dean of the School of Education at Kansas University. The group, charged with making recommendations to the State Board of Education in December, will next meet Aug. 5 in Salina. Several young people from McPherson wrote the task force...

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U.S. Department of Education announces new grant applications for school climate program

Kansas schools working on improving school climate, please take note: the U.S. Department of Education has invited applications for the School Climate Transformation Grant Program. School districts may seek funding for implementing a multi-tiered system of support for improving school climate. The department will prioritize support for certain communities that will benefit from implementation of this system, including rural communities, Tribal communities, and Local Education Agencies that are in Qualified Opportunity Zones. This discretionary grant program has a total of $40 million in estimated available funds, contingent upon the availability of funds and quality of applications. Applications are due by July...

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Because of increased demand, KASB adds second building secretaries workshop on June 18

Because of increased demand, KASB has added a second workshop for school building secretaries on Tuesday, June 18 in Topeka. There will also be a building secretaries workshop on Thursday, June 20 in Dodge City.  During these half-day sessions, KASB legal staff will provide legal guidance on issues that building secretaries face every day, such as privacy rights, custody rights and student records.   To register for the newly added afternoon meeting for building secretaries on June 18, go here. To register for the June 20 meeting in Dodge City go here.  KASB also is offering training throughout June in numerous other areas,...

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Gov. Kelly calls for early childhood improvements as community listening tours continue

Gov. Laura Kelly on Tuesday kicked off a community meeting in Hays with a call to strengthen programs serving preschool-aged children and their families as a key factor in workforce development and economic growth.  The Hays event was one of a series of engagement meetings being held across the state, beginning in May and continuing into July. This week, additional events are in Liberal today and Dodge City tomorrow. Here is a link to information on additional meetings in June. School leaders, as well as early childhood providers, parents and community leaders are encouraged to attend the one-hour events, which...

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KASB Policy Updates available

KASB’s Spring 2019 policy updates are now available.   This set of updates reflects the latest legal developments, including the impact of the 2019 Kansas legislative session on recommended school board policies. Updated and current board policies support you as you work to provide a quality educational program.  “Well-written policy ensures compliance with state and federal law, sets a foundation for fair and efficient school governance, and defines the board’s position and expectations in managing and operating local public schools,” said KASB Senior Attorney Angie Stallbaumer. “KASB’s Legal Department is pleased to offer these policy updates to our members.”   This comprehensive assistance in...

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Rural Education Summit set for June 13 at Kansas State University

A conference focused on helping rural school districts thrive is scheduled for June. The Rural Education Summit conducted by Kansas State University College of Education will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Thursday, June 13 in the Staley School of Leadership Studies Building on the K-State campus. The conference will provide school administrators, faculty, board members and concerned community members opportunities to learn more about addressing the challenges facing rural education and creating education innovations in rural communities. The summit will offer sessions on grant writing, student emotional wellness, professional development and getting students engaged with project-based learning. Three nationally...

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Gov. Kelly signs budget that includes increased school funding; line-item vetoes several education-related programs

Gov. Laura Kelly on Monday signed into law the state budget, which includes a $90 million increase for K-12 to address the school finance case before the Kansas Supreme Court, and made several education-related line-item vetoes. “There is a lot to celebrate in this state budget,” Kelly said. “We can accomplish so much good for the people of Kansas when reckless tax policy does not leave our state embroiled in a perpetual budget crisis. I appreciate the bipartisan work of lawmakers to pass a budget that takes meaningful strides to rebuild Kansas – including investments in public education, public safety,...

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New edition of KASB School Board Review is available

The new issue of School Board Review is available and features stories on the emphasis on early childhood services, a call for school board service as the candidate filing deadline nears, a wrap up of the legislative session and a look at what’s on the horizon for educators. The June issue is available here online and will be mailed out early next week. The edition also contains advice for school boards to reflect on what they did the past year to drive student success, a preview of the new task force that will recommend ways to address bullying, analyses of trends...

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Farm to School program provides healthy meals, ag education

Fruit is sweeter close to home. That’s what school officials hear from students when they buy watermelon and other fruit from nearby farms. Officials and students from several districts praised the “Farm to School” initiative in a presentation Tuesday to the State Board of Education. The program connects schools with local farms in order to serve nutritious meals and give students hands-on opportunities to grow gardens, raise farm animals and learn how to cook. “These are truly living, breathing classrooms,” said Jenny Lazarus, outdoor education coordinator of Lawrence USD 497. Students are learning where their food comes from and to eat healthy, she...

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ReConnect can help rural schools with broadband access

The State Director of USDA Rural Development sat down with KASB recently to talk about a new federal program that could help Kansas schools connect their communities to broadband internet access. The video interview is available at this link.  Lynne Hinrichsen said the $600 million federal ReConnect Infrastructure Program will enable “critical community facilities” like schools, hospitals and community centers to work with rural telecommunications and electric utilities on partnerships to provide broadband service to some of the most rural areas in the state. The application window opened in late April.  USDA is making available up to $200 million in grants,...

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