Kansas Legislature

KASB Daily Education Report, Thur. April 4

Kansas legislators on Thursday sent to Gov. Laura Kelly a bi-partisan school funding plan that supporters said they believe will satisfy the Kansas Supreme Court direction to add an inflation adjustment to earlier funding increases.  Kelly indicated she would sign SB 16 into law and send it to the court for inspection, tweeting that the Legislature “took an important step today towards addressing the needs of our students, supporting our teachers and fully funding our schools. I’m proud this reasonable commonsense plan was embraced with bipartisan support today. Kansans want us to work together to move Kansas forward.  “By investing in [...]

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KASB urges support of school finance agreement

The Kansas Association of School Boards commends House and Senate leaders on the agreement on school finance and educational policy in SB 16. We urge the House and Senate to accept this conference committee report.  KASB believes the plan should bring Kansas school funding back to the inflation-adjusted level of 2009. When school funding was increased after the Montoy case beginning in 2006, measures of student outcomes – graduation rates, state and national test scores, college readiness, postsecondary attendance and completion – all increased.   However, during the past decade, Kansas K-12 funding fell behind the cost of living, per pupil funding [...]

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Wed. April 3

The Senate-approved school funding plan will be voted on in the House on Thursday and KASB urges educators to contact their legislators and encourage them to support it.  “This is not a done deal. Legislators need to hear from you,” said KASB’s Associate Executive Director Mark Tallman.  Movement on school finance occurred Wednesday after a series of contentious meetings of the House-Senate conference committee.  Ultimately, House K-12 Education Budget Chair Kristey Williams, R-Augusta, said the full House would vote on the funding levels contained in SB 142, which includes four years of increases and the inflation adjustment cited by the Kansas Supreme [...]

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Tue. April 2

House and Senate school finance negotiators made little headway Tuesday and then adjourned without setting a time to meet up again.  Sen. Molly Baumgardner, R-Louisburg, and Rep. Kristey Williams, R-Augusta, had a testy exchange when the committee broke for the day.  Williams declined to say when she wanted to meet again nor say when she would let Baumgardner know. That happened after Baumgardner told Williams that the Senate wanted to stick with its SB 142 funding plan — applying the inflation adjustment for the next four years and approved by the full Senate in a 32-8 bipartisan vote.   Williams has pushed for [...]

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April issue of School Board Review focuses on upcoming school board elections, safety drill

This year is an election year for school board members and the April issue of School Board Review includes a four-page, pull-out section dedicated to people who want to run for their local board. The section includes information on what school board members do, why the positions are so important for the success of Kansas students and how to file to run for office. Also in the April issue is a special report on a recent crisis drill conducted by Auburn-Washburn USD 437. We hope the story, which illustrates the collaboration between school and emergency responders, helps districts that are contemplating [...]

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Education leaders urged to contact members of House-Senate conference committee on SB 16

School leaders are urged to contact members of the House-Senate conference committee on SB 16 to respond to questions from committee members, who remained far apart Monday after three meetings.   In fact, the committee is somewhat divided on what it should even be discussing, because the House heavily amended SB 16 to include numerous education policy provisions but never passed a bill with actual school funding appropriations or a response to the Gannon lawsuit.  The Senate, on the other hand, passed SB 142, adopting an inflation adjustment to last year’s school funding bill in response to the Kansas Supreme Court. [...]

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Legislature returns to work on school finance

The Kansas Legislature returns to work today after a long weekend with the clock ticking on reaching an agreement on school finance. The state faces an April 15 deadline to provide the Kansas Supreme Court with legal briefs on a proposed remedy to the court’s instruction to add an inflation adjustment to an earlier K-12 increase. House and Senate negotiators start meeting today on SB 16, which the House filled with numerous policy provisions. The Senate has approved SB 142, which includes the four-year inflation adjustment, but a House GOP leadership plan, HB 2395, which cuts off funding increases in fiscal [...]

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Status of education bills as House and Senate take break

As the full House and Senate go on a short break until Monday, here is the status of major education bills. Education advocates are urged to contact their legislators to talk about K-12 finance, resolving the Gannon lawsuit and the many policy provisions in SB 16. On funding, KASB urges support of SB 142, which includes the four-year inflation adjustment supported by the State Board of Education, Gov. Laura Kelly and the Senate. KASB opposes HB 2395. On policy provisions, KASB opposes many of the provisions of SB 16. House – No action on Substitute for HB 2395 (Funding); leaves [...]

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Tue. March 26

After passing an education policy bill, SB 16, with multiple requirements for school reporting, studies and program requirements, the Kansas House adjourned Tuesday without voting on how to respond to the Gannon school finance case. No vote is scheduled for today, and the House will not meet again until Monday, with the adjournment of the regular Legislative session April 5.  The Kansas Senate has already passed a bill, SB 142, that adjusts school district foundation aid to add about $90 million a year to the five-year funding plan approved last session to meet the inflation adjustment requested by the Kansas [...]

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Late breaking: House approves SB 16 on 63-61 vote

Despite opposition from education groups, including KASB, and school districts, the Kansas House on Tuesday approved SB 16, which would make numerous policy changes. The 63-61 vote sends the bill back to the Senate for consideration. Here is a link to the vote tally. Pushed by House GOP leaders, SB 16 emerged heavily amended from the House K-12 Education Budget Committee. KASB supports some of the changes, but opposes others, including removal of the 92 percent of excess special education funding target and new requirements on local transportation policies. In addition, KASB said SB 16 should not have been considered until the [...]

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