Instruction & Services

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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Vaping, early childhood, school redesign on State Board of Education’s agenda

Concerns about the increase in student use of e-cigarettes, or vaping, will be presented to the State Board of Education. The presentation is scheduled for 2 p.m. Tuesday and will be conducted by Jordan Roberts, youth prevention manager for the Kansas Department of Health and Environment; David Stubblefield, executive director of school administration for Blue Valley USD 229 and Mark Thompson, education program consultant for the Kansas State Department of Education. Here is a link to the board’s agenda and backup materials. Also on Tuesday, the board will receive an update on work going on to strengthen Kansas’ early childhood system....

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Fifty-six teachers honored by Kansas Reading Roadmap

Fifty-six teachers and classroom staff are being honored across the state for their work promoting early literacy, ensuring that children are equipped for future educational success. As part of National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 6-10, the Kansas Reading Roadmap (KRR) honored a teacher at 56 of their partner schools across the state. The KRR Outstanding Early Literacy Teacher award recognizes a teacher who contributes significantly to early literacy at their school. KRR asked schools to nominate a teacher who has played a critical role in the school to help students succeed in reading. The 56 nominees were honored by KRR within...

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Education bills approved this session

While school finance dominated much of the first part of the 2019 legislative session, legislators turned their attention to other education issues as well.   Here is a list of bills approved and signed into law that will affect schools:   SB 9 - Authorizing the transfer of $115 million from the state general fund to the Kansas public employee's retirement fund during fiscal year 2019.     SB 16 - Amendments to the Kansas school equity and enhancement act and other statutes related to education (Gannon lawsuit response).     Increases BASE for school years 2019-23;     Changes schedule of school finance audits;     Requires KSDE to prepare state accountability reports and school district funding reports;    State...

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