Safety and Security

KASB Daily Education Roundup, Mon. March 16

A bill that would allow the State Board of Education to waive the minimum required length of the school term was recommended Monday as schools face being closed for an indefinite period of time because of the COVID-19 outbreak. The measure was placed in SB 142, an unused school finance bill from last year, and may be considered by the full House as early as Tuesday as legislators race to finish their business and adjourn as the coronavirus crisis worsens. Current law allows the State Board to grant schools waivers of the length of term law — 1,116 hours of instruction...

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Thur. March 5

The House Appropriations Committee on Thursday continued work on the Kansas State Department of Education budget and decided to put off some important decisions until later in the session. The committee accepted an amendment to add $5 million in grants for schools to help them improve safety and security in their buildings. The committee also said it would wait until later in the session to consider funding a statewide dyslexia coordinator and whether to increase special education funding from savings due to lower-than-expected student enrollment. And the committee continued wrestling with how to go forward in funding mental health services for public...

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KASB sponsored meetings and COVID-19 concerns

KASB continues to monitor concerns relating to public events and the COVID-19 Virus. At this time the Association plans to continue all scheduled meetings, activities and events.   As a precaution, we recommend that all participants suspend hand shaking/fist bumping greetings until otherwise noted.   We will continue to rely on the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and local health departments for information and advice relating to how best to protect the safety and welfare of our staff and our meeting participants. If additional precautions are needed, staff and participants will be notified immediately.  The Association has initiated additional sanitation measures at...

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March issue of School Board Review available now

The March issue of School Board Review is full of news about what is happening in education from Washington, D.C. to Topeka and throughout Kansas. Here is a link to the publication and a hard copy should be arriving for school board members and administrators in the mail soon. Federal K-12 issues are previewed with insights from NSBA Executive Director Thomas Gentzel and new polling information about the public’s view of public schools. Meanwhile, KASB Advocacy/Outreach Specialist Leah Fliter provides coverage of KASB attendees recent trip to the NSBA Advocacy Institute in D.C. in which Kansas board members met with Kansas’ congressional...

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Kansas school and health officials respond to coronavirus

State education officials Friday urged people to use good hygiene and not spread rumors amid growing outbreaks of the new coronavirus. In a live Twitter discussion, Kansas Education Commissioner Randy Watson said he was sending KDHE interim guide documents to schools about COVID-19. Watson, Susan McMahan, director of KSDE’s Safe and Secure Schools Unit and KSDE program consultant Mark Thompson urged Kansans to practice good hygiene by washing their hands frequently, covering their mouths when sneezing or coughing, staying home with a fever and not returning to school or work for at least 24 hours after the fever has dissipated without...

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Wed. Jan. 29

A bill that could prevent school districts from filing lawsuits to redress harm -- such as the current litigation against e-cigarette manufacturers -- drew strong opposition Wednesday from KASB,  representatives of local governments and plaintiff's attorneys. The House Judiciary Committee took no action on HB 2461 but discussions on the measure are expected to continue. Here is a Facebook Live recap of the hearing and a look at Thursday and next week. Meanwhile, Thursday is shaping up to be a busy day on education bills in the Legislature as hearings are scheduled on bills to expand voucher/tuition tax credits, address liability...

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Thur., Jan. 23

A state audit on at-risk funding was at the center of discussion Thursday for a third day — this time before the Senate Education Committee. Committee Chairwoman Molly Baumgardner, R-Louisburg, said legislators will probably be looking at this issue throughout the session. In December, the Legislative Division of Post Audit issued a report saying most at-risk spending was used for teachers and programs for all students and most at-risk practices approved by the State Board of Education did not target at-risk students and were not clearly evidence-based. State education officials have vehemently denied the allegations, saying the audit failed to grasp...

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KASB Daily Education Roundup, Tue. Jan. 21

At-risk funding, vaping and juvenile justice discussions occurred on Tuesday in the Statehouse Legislators started unpacking an audit that raised questions about at-risk funding while education officials tried to impress upon them that the job of helping students who are struggling is a complicated task that is difficult to measure in a fiscal analysis. Applying at-risk funding across the 286 school districts in the state is “not a one-size fits all” operation, said Brad Neuenswander, deputy commission of the Kansas State Department of Education. “It’s different for every child, every teacher and in every district,” he told the House K-12 Education...

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