Kansas Legislature

Legislators seek changes to continuous learning plans

Some legislators on Tuesday indicated they want to make changes to continuous learning plans if the online instruction practice is needed next year because of the coronavirus pandemic.  The House K-12 Education Budget Committee approved a proposal that would require that continuous learning plans include some “direct contact instruction.” The proposal also sets specific amounts of time that teachers must provide reading, math and English instruction and calls for accountability measures to gauge student progress. Here is a link to the proposal.   The plan, put together by Committee Chair Kristey Williams, R-Augusta, will be sent as a recommendation to the...

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KASB Legislative Roundup, Tuesday, May 19

Senate Judiciary plans action on COVID related bills  After two days of hearings, the Senate Judiciary Committee is expected to debate on Wednesday a series of proposals including COVID-related liability issues; the governor’s disaster emergency declarations, orders and authority; and greater legislative control over spending federal COVID-related funding.  According to committee chair Sen. Rick Wilborn, R-McPherson, bills will be drafted for the committee’s consideration when it meets at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday morning. If approved, these bills could go the full Senate for debate when the Legislature returns for a one-day wrap-up session Thursday. The concepts include:  First, extending legal liability protection for...

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K-12 Education Budget Committee to discuss Continuous Learning Plans

The House K-12 Education Budget Committee will conduct a remote meeting today (Tue. May 19) to discuss Continuous Learning Plans. The meeting will start at 3:30 p.m. Here is a link to observe the meeting. School districts statewide implement Continuous Learning Plans in March after Gov. Laura Kelly shut down school buildings for the remainder of the school year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Continuous Learning Plans have included a combination of online instruction, delivered lesson packets and small group teaching. While the plans have gained praise and been copied by other states, most educators agree that some students will lose ground...

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KASB Legislative Roundup, Mon. May 18

Kansas legislative committees continued meeting Monday in anticipation of the final one-day session of the Legislature on Thursday.  The House and Senate Judiciary committees have been charged with considering legal liability projections associated with the COVID-19 pandemic and the governor’s use of disaster declarations and executive orders.  The House committee finished three days of meetings with no conclusions or recommendations on either subject.  Attorney General Derek Schmidt set out nine areas of concern or questions about the state emergency management act, which authorizes the governor to declare disaster emergencies and issue executive orders, and other related areas of state law.  He said his...

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KASB to offer two online sessions today: Advocacy and `Leadership Through a New Lens’

KASB will conduct two online sessions today (May 18) — one to help new school board members and one to provide an advocacy update on budget issues, the 2020 legislative session and State Board of Education developments. The advocacy session, which starts at noon today, is available to all who receive the KASB News Briefs, including board members, educators, advocates and media. There is no registration fee but pre-registration is required. To register in advance for this meeting, go to this link. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. The session will feature updates on...

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KASB Legislative Roundup, Fri. May 15

The Kansas House Judiciary Committee heard a briefing on the authority of the governor and local health officials to implement orders and restrictions for disasters and emergencies on Friday.  The briefing was a preview of a hearing Monday expected to feature the Legislature’s chief legal advisor, the state Attorney General and a representative of the Governor’s office. The Legislature endorsed Gov. Laura Kelly’s original disaster declaration in March, but many Republicans have criticized the pace of her plan to remove restrictions on business, social and religious gatherings and other activities.  Last week, the State Finance Council, composed of the governor and...

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KASB to offer two online sessions today: Advocacy and `Leadership Through a New Lens’

KASB will conduct two online sessions today (May 18) — one to help new school board members and one to provide an advocacy update on budget issues, the 2020 legislative session and State Board of Education developments. The advocacy session, which starts at noon today, is available to all who receive the KASB News Briefs, including board members, educators, advocates and media. There is no registration fee but pre-registration is required. To register in advance for this meeting, go to this link. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. The session will feature updates on...

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KASB Legislative Roundup, Thur. May 14

The House Committee on Taxation Thursday evening approved a bill that would give local governments, including school districts, more authority to issue no fund warrants to cover expenditures in excess of current revenues caused by, or resulting from, a federal, state or local disaster or emergency, including a financial, public health or disaster emergency, declared by a federal or state official.  No funds warrants are basically short-term bonds issued to cover unanticipated expenditures that exceed revenues. The bill would require the borrowing to be repaid within five years through a special tax levy. Current law allows no fund warrants to...

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KASB online session Monday to provide advocacy update on numerous education issues

KASB will conduct an online legislative and advocacy update at noon Monday, May 18 to review budget issues, the 2020 session and State Board of Education developments.  This session is available to all who receive the KASB News Briefs, including board members, educators, advocates and media.   There is no registration fee but pre-registration is required. To register in advance for this meeting, go to this link.  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.  The session will feature updates on state and federal issues as the Legislature prepares for a one-day end of session on...

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KASB Daily Legislative Roundup, Wed. May 13

Republican legislators leaders on Wednesday blasted Gov. Laura Kelly, a Democrat, over her executive orders during the coronavirus pandemic, and then extended the state emergency disaster declaration to May 26, instead of June 13 as the governor wanted. Meeting as the State Finance Council, Republicans also said they plan to rewrite the state’s emergency management law when the 2020 session convenes for its final day on May 21. Holding significant majorities in the Legislature, Republicans made it clear Kelly would need to abide by the changes to continue using emergency authority during the pandemic. During the meeting, Senate President Susan Wagle,...

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