Student Issues

KASB President’s Perspective: Hope for recovery in funding, teacher pay

By Shannon Kimball KASB President Lawrence USD 497 Greetings! It is my honor and privilege to serve as your Association president this year. I have been fortunate to learn from past president Patrick Woods’ leadership throughout this last year, as well as former past president Dayna Miller and incoming president-elect Lori Blake. I thank each of them for their dedicated service to KASB, and I know together our leadership team will work hard to ensure KASB successfully meets the needs of our members and continues to be the leading voice of public education in Kansas. I am serving my eighth year on my...

Read more...

New federal opportunity for mental health funding

The U.S. Department of Education is inviting school districts to seek funding through the Mental Health Service Professional Demonstration Grant Program to support innovative partnerships that will train school-based mental health services providers. Applications are due by August 5. According to the Department, the partnerships must include one or more high-need school districts or a state educational agency on behalf of one or more high-need districts; and one or more eligible institutions of higher education. Partnerships must provide opportunities to place graduate students in school-based mental health fields into schools to complete required field work, credit hours, internships, or related...

Read more...

KASB statement on immigrant children in detention

KASB appreciates Congress’s action to begin to address the inhumane conditions at facilities where immigrant children are being detained, particularly when separated from their families.   KASB stands with the National School Boards Association in recognizing that the inhumane treatment of children and their families seeking entry or asylum into the United States is traumatic for the children and their families. Lack of adequate food, housing, health care, basic hygiene, educational services and social and emotional support causes trauma that severely inhibits children’s ability to learn and function.  This issue is specifically a concern to KASB because we know some of these...

Read more...

Responses sought on current efforts to combat school bullying

A work group of the blue-ribbon task force on school bullying is seeking information through an online questionnaire.  The questionnaire is specifically directed at administrators, counselors, teachers and other support staff, but could be filled out by others, including board members and students. Here is a link. It asks what respondents know about current policies and efforts to address bullying, and what they wish the school was doing.  The task force was created by Education Commissioner Randy Watson in response to data that 28 percent of students in grades six through twelve experience bullying, despite years of efforts to address the...

Read more...

Early childhood plan will be based on local needs, official says

After dozens of public meetings on early childhood issues, a leading official says a statewide strategy to improve the availability of services for young Kansans and their families will have to rise from the ground up. “Every community is a little different in the way they approach things,” said Melissa Rooker, executive director of the Kansas Children’s Cabinet and Trust Fund. “There are a key set of challenges to address, but the solution will not be a top-down solution,” Rooker said. The Children’s Cabinet, along with the Kansas State Department of Education, Kansas Department for Children and Families and the Kansas...

Read more...

KASB announces Advanced Advocacy Training Initiative

To develop a deeper understanding and network of education advocates in Kansas, KASB is excited to announce the Advanced Advocacy Training Initiative (AATI) for the 2019-2020 school year.  “With the recent Kansas Supreme Court ruling in support of the four-year school finance plan adopted by the Kansas Legislature, advocacy and support for education becomes more critical than ever,” said KASB governmental relations specialist Rob Gilligan. “The focus of our efforts will now be less on securing additional funding than on keeping the long-term financial commitments in place and ensuring that we communicate effectively the progress that continues to be made...

Read more...

KASB Focus: Restorative practice: Is it a game changer in improving school climate?

By Leah Fliter lfliter@kasb.org  Continuing concerns about how Kansas students’ social and emotional health, bullying and other behavioral challenges affect learning have prompted educational leaders to explore new ways to influence school climate. “Restorative practice” is one such strategy.  Restorative practice, also known as restorative justice, works to keep students in school while addressing problem behavior and its impact on the school community. Students are held accountable for their behavior, but educators are trained to look for the root causes of the behavior and respond accordingly.  For example, a student witnesses a fight between her parents just before she leaves for school. Upset...

Read more...

KASB Live: Special Report on 2020 Census

School officials are being urged to get involved in the Census to ensure Kansas receives its fair share of federal dollars, including education funds, through an accurate count.   Wendi Stark, Census Outreach Manager for the League of Kansas Municipalities, and Rob Gilligan, KASB Government Relations Specialist, spoke recently about the upcoming Census on a special report of KASB Live. Here is a link to the video and here is a link to a PowerPoint presentation containing Census information. KASB has created a Census page on its website here and in the coming weeks, KASB will hold a series of regional...

Read more...

Building secretaries go to law school at KASB workshops

New KASB workshops in Topeka and Dodge City this week helped school building staff better understand the numerous and sometimes-difficult legal topics they encounter.  School Law for Building Secretaries and Administrative Assistants was offered in Topeka and Dodge City to 90 building staffers from across Kansas. High demand prompted the scheduling of a second Topeka session.  “School secretaries and office staff encounter legal issues every day,” said KASB Attorney Ashley Rohleder. “They handle student records, deal with the ramifications of custody disputes, and are often the first to know about issues like tardiness, abuse and neglect. The School Law for Building...

Read more...

Afterschool reading programs help students make reading gains, new study says

Children attending afterschool reading programs were more likely to achieve early reading proficiency, according to a new study commissioned by Reading Roadmap. The study analyzed 9,000 elementary students across 58 different schools over the 2017-18 academic year. Using school-administered reading assessments, the study compared progress toward reading benchmark among elementary-age children that attended school-based afterschool programs with those who did not. The study found children attending afterschool reading interventions were 26 percent more likely to reach benchmark than their non-attending peers. According to the study’s author, Mustafa Yilmaz, “The effect of the relationship was equivalent to a 1.7 percent greater chance...

Read more...