Teacher Issues

Senate releases new pandemic response bill with K-12 funding

U.S. Senate Republicans released their latest response to the COVID-19 pandemic on Monday. The bill has an overall price tag of $1 trillion and contains K-12 education funding of about $70 billion, with two-thirds of that only available to school districts that have in-person reopening plans approved by their state’s Governor. The measure must now be reconciled with the $3 trillion HEROES Act passed earlier this summer by the U.S. House, which reflects Democratic Party priorities for pandemic response. KASB is monitoring the Congressional negotiations and will continue to report on what is expected to be a very fluid...

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Most Kansas students will start school after Labor Day

Nearly 60 percent of Kansas students are expected to start school after Labor Day, according to a survey released by the Kansas State High School Activities Association and supplemented by survey data from KASB.  The percent of districts, not students, starting after Labor Day (Sept. 7) is about 17 percent. The difference is because most of the state’s largest school districts in terms of enrollment pushed back their start date.  Earlier in July, Gov. Laura Kelly proposed an executive order that would have required all public and private schools to wait until after Labor Day to begin any activities. The State...

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Major groups make endorsements in primaries

With the political party primaries less than one week away, major organizations that represent a wide variety of interests have endorsed candidates. KASB doesn’t make political endorsements, but provides information on education issues and urges Kansans to vote and participate in the election process. Here is a link to KASB’s Overview of Kansas Public Education Issues. The Republican and Democratic primaries are Tue. Aug. 4. The general election is Tue. Nov. 3. Every seat in the Kansas House and Senate, half of 10 positions on the State Board of Education, all four of Kansas' U.S. Representative positions and one U.S. Senate...

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KASB `Lunch & Learn’ today will focus on school reopening

At noon today (Wed. July 29), KASB will tackle the No. 1 and No. 2 public policy questions on the minds of Kansans — when will school start and how? Please join us for the Zoom forum, which will feature KASB Assistant Executive Director for Advocacy Mark Tallman, KASB Leadership Services Field Specialist Gary Sechrist and KASB Attorney Sam Blasi. The Board Leadership session is open to all KASB member boards of education and district leaders. There is no registration fee, however, pre-registration is required to receive access to the online sessions via Zoom. Here is a link to register. School districts...

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KASB offers `Lunch and Learns’ and Training for Evaluation of Principals and Teachers

KASB will continue the popular Board Leadership forums this week with its “Lunch and Learns” series at noon Wednesday (July 29) on Zoom. In addition, KASB will conduct Training for Evaluation of Principals and Teachers during a virtual Thursday session. The “Lunch and Learns” sessions provide relevant and timely information to help K-12 leaders make decisions on re-opening schools and other issues confronting education during the COVID-19 pandemic. Wednesday’s discussion will focus on how the pandemic has affected several areas of operations, including setting and revising board policies; approving student and staff handbooks; providing direction to the superintendent; evaluating the superintendent;...

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CDC releases revised guidance for reopening schools

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Thursday evening released guidance for the reopening of school buildings for the 2020-21 school year following the COVID-19 pandemic that closed schools in March. Some aspects of the guidance differ from recommendations released by the CDC last May and come as many Kansas school districts are finalizing their reopening plans.   The “Preparing K-12 School Administrators for a Safe Return to School in Fall 2020” is posted on KASB’s “Roadmap to Reopening” Resources page on our website.  One change from the CDC’s May recommendations is new guidance on screening students for COVID-19 symptoms.    “Based on the best available evidence at this time, CDC does not currently recommend universal symptom screenings (screening all students...

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Get the latest on governor’s executive orders, school reopenings during KASB Advocacy update at noon today

When will schools open? Will Congress approve more K-12 funding? What is the status of state funding? How can we close the homework gap? These questions and others will be discussed at noon today (July 24) during the KASB Advocacy Update. Education leaders are invited to join the KASB Advocacy staff to review recent public school developments on the state and federal level, including Gov. Laura Kelly’s executive order on health precautions at schools and her order rejected by the State Board of Education on delaying the start of school. The meeting will be held online via Zoom. There is no registration...

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After rejection of Kelly’s order, school districts move forward with re-opening plans

Kansas districts are implementing school re-opening plans around a surge in COVID-19 cases and a rollercoaster week of activity in Topeka.  Last week, the Kansas State Department of Education released its “Navigating Change 2020” document to help guide districts through the re-opening process. A day later, the State Board of Education accepted the document’s recommendations, but then hours later Gov. Laura Kelly announced she would issue an executive order to delay the start of school until Sept. 9. Kelly also issued an order to require masks, social distancing, hand sanitizing and temperature checks in schools.  A week later, the State Board...

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State Board of Education rejects Gov. Kelly’s proposal to delay start of schools

The State Board of Education on Wednesday rejected Gov. Laura Kelly’s executive order to delay the start of school until Sept. 9. The decision on when to start school is now up to local school districts and Kelly is recommending they start later because of the record surge of COVID-19 cases that Kansas is currently experiencing. "Our decisions must be informed by public health experts not politics. This votes puts our students, faculty, their families and our economy at risk" Kelly said. "I will continue to work with our school districts to ensure the safety and well-being of our children...

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“Roadmap to Reopening” online session at noon today

What a week. Kansas education leaders released guidance on reopening schools and just hours later, Gov. Laura Kelly announced she will issue an executive order seeking to delay school reopening until Sept. 9 because of surging COVID-19 cases. To try to make sense of it all, join us at noon today (Fri. July 17) for an online interactive meeting called “Roadmap to Reopening: Framework Overview” on the major issues school boards face in planning for school this fall. To register, go to this link. Another session of "Roadmap to Reopening" will be held at noon Wed. July 22. Since, Gov. Kelly has...

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