Education bills approved this session

While school finance dominated much of the first part of the 2019 legislative session, legislators turned their attention to other education issues as well.  

Here is a list of bills approved and signed into law that will affect schools:  

SB 9 - Authorizing the transfer of $115 million from the state general fund to the Kansas public employee’s retirement fund during fiscal year 2019.    

SB 16 - Amendments to the Kansas school equity and enhancement act and other statutes related to education (Gannon lawsuit response).    

Increases BASE for school years 2019-23;    

Changes schedule of school finance audits;    

Requires KSDE to prepare state accountability reports and school district funding reports;   

State to provide one ACT/WorkKeys test at no charge to students grades 11-12, Pre-ACT to each 9th grader;    

Changes definition of schools in the Low-income Student Scholarship Program from the 100 lowest performing schools to the 100 lowest performing public elementary schools;    

Extends Dylsexia Task Force until June 30, 2022;    

Adds JAG-K and Boys and Girls Clubs to the list of public education financing included in satisfying the requirements under Article 6 of the Kansas Constitution;    

Extends 20-mill property tax levy for schools to FY 2020 and 2021;    

Makes Capital Improvement State Aid a revenue transfer from the State General Fund (SGF) for FY 2020, FY 2021, and FY 2022;    

Makes appropriations for FY 2020 ($104.5 million) and 2021($114.2 million) for Kansas Department of Education.   

SB 128 - Requiring at least nine safety drills to be conducted by schools each year including four fire, two tornado and three crisis drills.    

SB 130 - Moving school board officer elections and organizations from July to January or at a date to be determined by the board. Allows school districts to make changes in the method of elections or voting plans at a special election, a primary election or a general election.    

SB 199 - Creating the AO-K to work program that allows certain adults to earn high school equivalency credentials by participating in career pathway oriented postsecondary classes.    

HB 2144 - Structure and financing of community colleges; the duty of transparency owed by community colleges to property taxpayers and students of community colleges; and reaffirming the students and taxpayers of community colleges as the priority in financial decisions, reporting processes, and transparency measures of community colleges.   

HB 2087 – Concerning the motor-fuel tax law; relating to the definition of school bus; allows school districts to receive fuel-tax rebate on fuel for any district vehicle used to transport students.   

Awaiting Governor’s action:    

H Sub for SB 25: Appropriations for Fiscal Years 2019, 2020, 2021 and 2022 for various agencies.  This bill includes the state’s school funding in addition to $2 million more for mental health initiatives and $5 million in school security grants.  

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