Student Issues

KASB Legislative Committee finalizes draft report

The KASB Legislative Committee has approved its draft recommendations on legislative policy provisions.  The proposals will now go to the Delegate Assembly for a vote on Sunday, Dec. 8 during the KASB Annual Conference in Wichita. Once approved by the Delegate Assembly, the report will guide KASB on issues that arise before the Kansas Legislature and on the federal level.   Here is a link to the draft document. Proposed changes from last year’s resolutions are shown in red.  The draft report includes additional statements on the education of immigrant students, vaping, bullying, Medicaid, federal special education funding and teacher recruitment and...

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Bullying task force hears from students, counselors

High school students on Wednesday said a good way to reduce bullying in schools is for educators to make students feel worthwhile. The seven students from Lawrence High School and Free State High School told the Blue Ribbon Task Force on Bullying Prevention that they frequently see bullying behavior at their schools and that it often goes unaddressed by teachers and administrators. And they said the bullying behavior is probably less physical than in past generations, but more socially-oriented with bullies manipulating and insulting students, especially on social media. When asked what educators can do to help stop bullying, the students said...

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KASB President’s Perspective: Tax policy matters for public education

By Shannon Kimball KASB President Lawrence USD 497 For many years, I have firmly believed that the high quality of public education in Kansas is one of the most important and compelling economic development, recruitment, and retention tools available. Our schools play an essential role in the quality-of-life metrics that attract families and businesses to come to or remain in our communities. Often, though, it has been my perception that the role of our schools in these discussions is at best overlooked, or at worst, undervalued or dismissed. So, it was with great excitement that I attended several days of meetings in September...

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Education leaders work on cultural proficiency at KASB workshop

Education leaders met Wednesday evening to learn about ways to raise awareness about the cultural diversity within their school districts and to make sure school policies applaud and respect those differences.   During the Cultural Proficiency Workshop, led by KASB Field Specialist Craig Wilford, attendees talked about the need to ensure that different races, ethnicities and gender are represented fairly in all aspects of school operations, including textbooks, curriculum, staffing and discipline. School leaders should also recognize differing perspectives in developing class rules and school advisory committees.  Wilford noted that one reason cultural proficiency is important is because “Who we are...

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KASB Pre-Conference Spotlight: Poverty simulation

The annual KASB Conference, which will be held in Wichita Dec. 6-8, is the largest gathering of school board members in Kansas and provides numerous learning and sharing opportunities. One of the best ways to take advantage of these opportunities is to participate in the pre-conference workshops on Fri. Dec. 6. Over the next few days, KASB will provide details on these workshops. Please sign up for the one that best suits you. It’s a great way to start the conference. Meeting All Kids Needs bus tours Foundations of Boardsmanship 1.0 Winter School Law Conference Kansas School Superintendent’s Day Poverty Simulation Many Kansas students live...

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Threat Assessment Team Training to make schools safer, help students

More than 100 officials from across Kansas on Monday participated in school Threat Assessment Team Training hosted by KASB. Threat Assessment has been touted as a way to prevent violence by creating teams within schools that will determine if any student conduct constitutes a real threat and work with all students on conflict resolution, bullying prevention and mental health. Oftentimes, instances of school shootings result in calls by the public and officials to harden facilities with metal detectors, video surveillance and other security measures, such as arming teachers. However, Frank Zenere, school psychologist and district coordinator of Student Services/Crisis Program for Miami-Dade...

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This week is National School Bus Safety Week

It’s National School Bus Safety Week, which is a good time to remind everyone of the importance of supporting safe school transportation. Here is a link to the National Association for Pupil Transport, which has a lot of resources on school bus safety. Kansas statistics show that motorists frequently violate laws that require stopping behind a stopped school bus. When a school bus stops and activates its stop arm and flashing red lights, all traffic must stop from both directions – whether it is a two- or four-lane road. When a school bus stops and activates its stop arm and flashing...

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Legislation aimed at reducing youth vaping almost ready

Health and education advocates say they are close to unveiling state legislation that would increase the minimum age in Kansas to purchase tobacco products, including electronic cigarettes, from 18 to 21. Similar laws — called Tobacco 21 — have been passed in 18 states and Washington D.C. Sarah Prem, advocacy specialist with the Kansas and Greater Kansas City American Lung Association, said tobacco-free groups are refining the legislation, recruiting sponsors and planning an education and communication campaign. “We want to construct that big tent,” she said. The 2020 legislative session starts in January. The proposed legislation has picked up momentum in recent months...

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Dyslexia recommendations before State Board of Education

A wide range of recommendations are before the State Board of Education to address students with dyslexia. “We are already doing a lot of good things; we just have to be more strategic,” State Board Chairwoman Kathy Busch said. Several other board members said the proposed changes are substantial, will require more work for educators and additional funding but are necessary. “We have to catch kids before they fail,” Board member Jim Porter said. The recommendations were recently outlined by Cindy Hadicke, who is an education program consultant at the Kansas State Department of Education and chaired a committee that evaluated the work...

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Applications open for Prudential awards that honor top youth volunteers

Applications are open for The Prudential Spirit of Community Awards, which recognizes America’s top youth volunteers of the year. NSBA encourages school superintendents to promote this promote to middle and high school principals. Applications for the 2020 awards are now open to students in grades 5-12 who have volunteered in the past year. This program, founded 25 years ago by Prudential Financial in partnership with National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP), honors middle level and high school students for making meaningful contributions to their communities through volunteer service. The program gives schools an opportunity to reward and shine a spotlight on...

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