Teacher Issues

School business officials implementing new state, federal policies

As Kansas school districts implement unprecedented continuous learning plans for students unable to physically attend through the end of May, school business officials are also working to implement new state and federal employment laws.  KASB has provided a series of online interactive meetings for school board clerks, payroll and human resource officers. Those meetings have been recorded, and along with other supporting information, are available for KASB Legal Assistance Fund members by accessing the member portal through a link at the top of the KASB homepage. Click the member portal, log in, then click on “Member Resources,” “Legal Assistance Fund”...

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Details, deadlines for Families First Coronavirus Response Act

Federal law now requires school districts to provide family and medical leave benefits for COVID-19 related reasons to any employee who has been employed for 30 days or more. That’s a change from previous law. In addition, school districts must notify employees of their rights under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) by Wed. April 1. Each covered employer must post a notice of the FFCRA requirements in a conspicuous place on its premises. An employer may satisfy this requirement by emailing or direct mailing this notice to employees, or posting this notice on an employee information internal or external...

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Federal efforts to support schools continue

Congress is on recess until April 20, but federal efforts to support K-12 public schools’ response to the coronavirus pandemic continue. The National School Boards Association (NSBA) and other advocates are seeking a fourth supplemental stimulus package to help schools.  President Trump on March 27 signed into law the $2 trillion Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which will funnel $13.5 billion to K-12 public education. While the law provides funding to several important programs, the levels are short of the $75 billion education advocates sought in the stimulus package. You can read KASB’s initial summary of the...

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Districts continue special education services

With school back in session in Kansas through continuous learning plans, districts must also be providing special education to students, even if the way most services are delivered has changed.  KASB legal services staff has posted video resources with guidance on how to provide these services. These and other materials are available to KASB Legal Assistance Fund members through the member portal on the KASB website home page.  Nearly one out of every six Kansas students receives special education services under an Individual Education Plan, including students in private schools getting special services from a public school.  Some key points: when school...

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Many districts today restart `school’ amid COVID-19 crisis

Kansas families, students and teachers today experienced a case of the first day of school jitters like never before. Across the state, school officials re-started “school” through online offerings, prepared lesson packets and other resources in the face of the coronavirus crisis that has shut down school buildings in Kansas and across the nation. Words of encouragement, thankfulness and advice came from all quarters. “It is completely OK to be nervous about what’s ahead, as long as you also keep in mind that we will work through the nerves together, we will work through the uncertainty together, and we will succeed together,”...

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President signs $2 trillion stimulus. Here is what it will do for education.

President Trump has signed into law an historic, $2 trillion economic stimulus package intended to address the wide-ranging impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The new law contains several billion dollars in education funding to assist state governments and local K-12 public schools respond to students’ needs.   The CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) Act legislation contains $30.75 billion for an Education Stabilization Fund to assist states, school districts, and higher education institutions for costs related to the coronavirus pandemic. K-12 public schools will receive $13.5 billion.  The CARES Act follows previous Congressional action on two previous COVID-19-related bills. One provided...

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For many districts, continuous learning starts Monday

For many Kansas school districts, the first day of school in the coronavirus world starts Monday.  Just 10 days ago, as COVID-19 spread throughout the world, nation and state, Gov. Laura Kelly ordered all schools closed for the duration of the school year and for the Kansas State Department of Education to implement a plan for the continuous education of the state’s nearly 500,000 students.  Two days later, a special task force headed by teachers, released a guidance on continuous learning that will allow Kansas students to continue with their studies despite school buildings being closed. For many districts, the rollout of...

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Key tasks for school boards right now

In two online video forums for school board leaders Thursday night and Friday morning, KASB executive, leadership services and legal staff presented information on critical tasks for local school boards as they confront the COVID pandemic. Approximately 400 school leaders attended. Participation was limited to board presidents, board vice-presidents, superintendents and board clerks to comply with open meetings requirements.  First, boards must determine how to conduct school board meetings that comply with both health directives like social distancing and the Kansas Open Meetings Act.  The Kansas Attorney General has proposed new regulations for conducting open meetings that have received temporary approval...

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KASB to conduct virtual Spring Regional Roundtable meetings

KASB has transformed its Spring Regional Roundtable meetings into three virtual meetings via Zoom that will focus on continuous developments during the coronavirus crisis.  The meetings will be held from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on April 2, April 8 and April 9. For registration information, go to www.kasb.org and click on Upcoming Events.   The meetings will include discussion and updates on COVID-19, the board’s role, continuous learning, communication strategies and legal and legislative updates.  Once registered, participants will receive a registration confirmation from pinpoint@kasb.org that will include a Zoom link to join the meeting.      

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COVID Response: KASB to conduct forums this week for school board presidents, vice presidents, clerks and superintendents

To address issues for school boards surrounding the coronavirus outbreak, KASB this week will hold forums for school leadership teams. The forums will be conducted free of charge via Zoom at 7 p.m. Thursday (March 26) and 9 a.m. Friday (March 27) and will focus on what school districts and boards must do to start continuous learning during building closures. The 90-minute meetings will include plenty of time to ask questions and share information. The forums will be limited to school board presidents, vice presidents, clerks and district superintendents. This will allow the meetings to be held within compliance of the...

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