Newsroom

No efficiency savings compounds budget challenge

The chairman of the House K-12 Education Budget Committee says the state will not realize $47.2 million in savings from consolidating school district procurement and health insurance next year, but the state should continue to seek efficiencies in those areas. However, the Governor's budget proposal for Fiscal Year 2018 has already cut school district aid by that amount, and reduces school aid by $89 million in FY 2019. That means the Legislature will have to find a way to restore that funding or district aid will be reduced even with a plan to cut costs. K-12 Budget Committee Chair Larry Campbell, R-Olathe, reported to the full House Appropriations Committee Monday...

Read more...

Senate committee considers rescission bill, but not school cuts

The Senate Ways and Means Committee on Monday considered amendments to a rescission bill for fiscal years 2017, 18 & 19 but did not take up the issue of a rumored two percent cut to K-12 public education. The rescission bill will likely be debated on the Senate floor on Thursday. Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning, R-Overland Park, who serves on the committee and manages the Senate’s floor action, said he would not bring any budget cut amendments to the committee or to the floor. KASB and others have heard that the Senate may consider the possible two percent cut in floor debate this week. Denning did introduce four amendments that were all...

Read more...

The School Board Review is out

The March issue of School Board Review looks at what Kansas public schools can expect from the new administration of President Donald Trump and U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos. The issue, which is online and in the mail, also provides valuable information to school districts about KASB’s Risk Management Division and features our second installment on Kansas’ National Blue Ribbon schools. In addition, the issue includes a question and answer segment with Kansas State Board of Education Chairman Jim Porter, catches up to what our new KASB Leadership for Tomorrow class is up to and takes a look into the future...

Read more...

KASB legislative webinar at 12:30 p.m. today

KASB will review what state legislators did this week during a webinar at 12:30 p.m. today. Discussions have continued school finance, taxes and numerous other topics of interest to school leaders. To join the webinar please go to https://kasb.adobeconnect.com/e4w8awp9izg/event/login.html. If you have participated before, look for the blue text stating “If you have registered with us before, please click here.” You will be taken to a new page. For those who cannot participate in the live webinar, it will be archived at kasb.org/legiswebinars.

Read more...

Kansas Capitol Connection: A weekly summary of education-related developments before the Legislature

This coming week may be a busy one for school advocates as the Kansas Senate may consider a 2 percent cut to public schools in the current year. Senate Ways and Means is scheduled on Monday to start working on a House-approved rescission bill, which contains no cuts to schools. That bill may be on the Senate floor by Wednesday, and amendments could be offered to this bill to cut K-12 spending. This week, the Kansas Legislature returned from its mid-session break to find a major chore underlined on its to-do list as the Kansas Supreme Court ruled the block grant...

Read more...

Senate school finance committee formed

Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, has formed a new Senate committee to propose a new school finance formula. “The Kansas Senate is committed to creating an equitable school funding formula prior to the end of this legislative session that Kansas students and educators can be proud of,” Wagle said. The Select Committee on Education Finance will be chaired by Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning, R-Overland Park, and the vice chair is Sen. Carolyn McGinn, R-Sedgwick. Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka, will serve as the ranking minority leader. The remaining committee members are Molly Baumgardner, R-Louisburg; Barbara Bollier, R-Mission Hills; Bud Estes,...

Read more...

New Senate committee formed to focus on school finance formula

Kansas Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, has formed a new Senate committee to propose a new school finance formula. “The Kansas Senate is committed to creating an equitable school funding formula prior to the end of this legislative session that Kansas students and educators can be proud of,” Wagle said. The Select Committee on Education Finance will be chaired by Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning, R-Overland Park, and the vice chair is Sen. Carolyn McGinn, R-Sedgwick. Senate Minority Leader Anthony Hensley, D-Topeka, will serve as the ranking minority leader. The remaining committee members are Molly Baumgardner, R-Louisburg; Barbara Bollier, R-Mission Hills; Bud Estes,...

Read more...

KASB will conduct webinar on Friday

The Legislature is back in town and KASB will review what state lawmakers did this week during a webinar at 12:30 p.m. Friday. Discussions have continued on school finance, taxes and numerous other topics of interest to school leaders. To join the webinar please go to https://kasb.adobeconnect.com/e4w8awp9izg/event/login.html. If you have participated before, look for the blue text stating “If you have registered with us before, please click here.” You will be taken to a new page. For those who cannot participate in the live webinar, it will be archived at kasb.org/legiswebinars.

Read more...

Gannon analysis

The Kansas Office of Revisor of Statutes has released a comprehensive summary of the state supreme court’s ruling in the Gannon school finance case, which ruled that the state’s two-year-old block grant system for funding K-12 public schools was not constitutionally adequate in either structure or implementation. KASB Staff Attorney Lori Church and KASB Associate Executive Director for Advocacy Mark Tallman conducted a webinar on the Gannon decision on March 2. You can view the archived webinar and supporting materials here.

Read more...

Bill expanding tax credits for scholarships to private schools will be considered Friday

A bill to expand state tax credits to pay for students to attend private schools will receive a public hearing this week. House Bill 2374 will be considered at 1:30 p.m. Friday before the House K-12 Education Budget Committee. The measure would expand participation in a current program that allows the granting of tax credits to those who contribute to a scholarship fund that is then used to pay the tuition of students to go to private schools, or even home schools. According the annual report on the program by the Kansas State Department of Education, there are currently 329 eligible students participating in the program, drawn from five school districts: 255 students from Kansas City USD...

Read more...