Kansas Legislature

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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KASB Statement on Kansas Supreme Court’s Gannon decision

Today is an historic day in Kansas public school education history. Today’s decision by the Kansas Supreme Court to uphold SB 16 will provide funding certainty for our public schools while also helping ensure the state’s multiyear commitment becomes reality. KASB applauds Gov. Laura Kelly, legislators, the State Board of Education and education advocates who have supported Kansas schools throughout this litigation and school districts that fought tirelessly for the level of K-12 commitment required by the Kansas Constitution. Kansas schools already are redesigning their operations to focus on early education, social-emotional growth, careers and civic engagement and Kansas academic standards are...

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Kansas Supreme Court upholds school finance law; retains jurisdiction

The Kansas Supreme Court today said the Kansas Legislature had “substantially complied” with its order to add an inflation adjustment to the multi-year funding plan approved last year. But the court said it will retain jurisdiction over the Gannon case to ensure the Legislature complies with that plan.  The 2018 Legislature adopted a plan to increase foundational state aid per pupil over a five-year phase-in period designed to restore funding to the 2009 level, adjusted for inflation. In response the court found that method acceptable to provide constitutionally suitable funding but ruled that the Legislature needed to provide additional funding...

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Gannon decision to be released tomorrow at 9:30 a.m.; KASB Live at 12:30 p.m.

The Kansas Supreme Court tomorrow will issue its decision in the long running Gannon school finance lawsuit. The court sent out a notice that its decision will be released at or shortly after 9:30 a.m. The decision will be available on the court’s recent and published opinions page here. KASB is planning a live webinar at 12:30 p.m. tomorrow to provide analysis of the decision. The State of Kansas has asked the court to accept SB 16, which was approved during the last legislative session, as an adequate response to the court’s previous ruling to add an inflation factor to earlier...

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State Board endorses Students Serve campaign

The Kansas State Board of Education has endorsed a new “Students Serve” initiative to recruit high school students as poll workers. The campaign dovetails with the State Board’s push for increased civic engagement among Kansas students.  Kansas Secretary of State Scott Schwab oversees election activities in the state; Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Communications and Policy Katie Koupal is leading the Students Serve effort. KASB, KNEA, USA-Kansas and the Kansas State High School Activities Association are program partners.  Koupal said county clerks and election officers asked the Secretary for help recruiting student workers. High school students age 16 and above...

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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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State Board of Education will take up recommendations aimed at reducing vaping

Alarmed by drastic increases in the use of e-cigarettes by Kansas students, the State Board of Education next week will consider recommendations aimed at curbing vaping among young people. The State Board meets Tuesday and Wednesday, June 11-12. The e-cigarette issue will be considered Tuesday afternoon. Here is a link to the board’s agenda and backup materials. Last month, K-12 and state health officials reported significant increases in the use of e-cigarettes, warned about the health problems and addictive qualities of vaping and said new devices are enabling young people to use e-cigarettes secretively in school and use them with illegal...

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Report says better use of federal dollars would help Kansas children and families

Kansas is missing out on billions of dollars in federal funds that could help children and families, according to a new report by Kansas Action for Children.  The report says Kansas ranks 48th among states in the federal share of the state budget and the lost federal funding impacts a wide range of programs that affects thousands of Kansans.  “Furthering Federal Funding to Bolster Outcomes for Kansas Kids” concludes that federal funding used in Kansas “can be strengthened and employed more efficiently to provide greater assistance to children and families.”  Kansas could help low income Kansans with more health care, child care,...

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Bully prevention task force meets in Clearwater

The Kansas State Department of Education’s Blue Ribbon Bully Prevention Task Force met Tuesday at the South Central Education Service Center in Clearwater.   Education Commissioner Dr. Randy Watson announced the formation of the Task Force in March, citing data that 28 percent of students in grades six through twelve experience bullying. Watson said, “Everywhere I go, parents want to discuss this issue.” Bullying has also been debated by the Kansas Legislature and several bills have been proposed over the past several years. The state anti-bullying statute was adopted in 2007 and revised in 2008. The task force will meet across...

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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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