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Mon April 21, 2014
UPDATE: Governor Brownback's Signs Education Funding Bill
Updated at 12:40 on April 21, 2014: Gov. Brownback announced in a press release on Monday that he has decided to sign HB 2506. The bill addresses school funding equity issues pointed out in a Kansas Supreme Court decision.
A deadline is approaching for Governor Sam Brownback to make a decision on whether to sign a bill on spending for Kansas’ public schools.
The Kansas Supreme Court issued a ruling in March giving legislators until July 1st to restore funding for two school finance provisions that give more state aid to poor districts.
The measure increases spending by more than $129 million dollars, funds separate programs at state colleges and universities and makes changes in education policy, including teacher employment rights and tenure.
The funding plan eliminates the right for teachers who’ve been in the classroom at least three years to have an administrative hearing if they are facing dismissal from their jobs.
The Kansas National Education Association says administrators in the future won’t be required to give a reason for firing a teacher, even if the reason is because of performance or expressing their political or religious views.
KNEA officials have vowed to challenge the law if a tenured teacher is dismissed using the new law in the future.
Governor Brownback has so far kept his intentions to himself, though he's made statements during stops at state universities to highlight investments in research and other programs.