Kansas school finance system back in court

KASB will provide gavel-to-gavel coverage of oral arguments Thursday in the Gannon school finance case before the Kansas Supreme Court.

Follow KASB on Twitter for developments during the arguments, which start at 9 a.m., and then Facebook for interviews after the event and later at 12:30 p.m. during KASB Live for analysis of the court proceedings from KASB’s Donna Whiteman, attorney and assistant executive director legal services, and Mark Tallman, associate executive director advocacy and communications.

The dispute before the court centers on SB 16 — the legislative fix to add an inflation adjustment to school funding.

The state argues SB 16 satisfies the court’s last decision in Gannon by providing an additional $92 million and sustaining that for the next four years. In addition, the state says SB 16 enjoys widespread support with bipartisan approval in the Legislature, signed by the Governor, based on recommendations of the State Board of Education, and supported by numerous educational organizations, including KASB.

However, the plaintiffs say the state has missed the mark. The plaintiffs argue, SB 16 makes a “one time increase to Kansas K-12 public education of approximately $92 million in FY 20. After that, the bill makes no effort to increase funding any further. Any further increases in the base are solely attributable to 2018’s S.B. 61. An increase of $92 million in FY 20 does not comply with this Court’s Order in Gannon VI.”

A decision in the case is expected no later than June 30.

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