education funding

Alex Starr, flickr Creative Commons

Attorney General Derek Schmidt says a law signed by Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback last week satisfies the state's constitutional duty to provide equitable funding to public schools.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports Schmidt filed a brief with the state Supreme Court on Friday urging it to withdraw its threat to close the state's schools.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

The Kansas Supreme Court will hear arguments next month in a school funding lawsuit. At issue is whether Kansas lawmakers have complied with a previous ruling that says funding disparities need to be reduced.

Republican House Speaker Ray Merrick says he isn’t planning on waiting for the ruling before ending the session. He believes legislators helped reduce disparities when they redistributed school funding.

“I think we’ve done our job. I think it’s a good bill. Is equity ever going to be solved? I don’t think you can ever solve equity,” Merrick says.

J. Stephen Conn, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Supreme Court has set a hearing for May 10 on a school funding plan aimed at reducing disparities between school districts.

Justices have threatened to close schools if the issue isn’t resolved by this summer. The date of the hearing might mean it isn’t fully settled by the time lawmakers want to end the session.

The so-called veto session starts the last week of April and traditionally lasts from a few days to a few weeks. Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt says a decision following the hearing could come quickly because justices seem to be working fast.

Alex Starr, flickr Creative Commons

The back-and-forth discussion about school funding in the state of Kansas has been, without a doubt, confusing. Last week, Gov. Sam Brownback signed a bill that lawmakers hope will fix a major problem in education financing. But how could that bill affect students in Wichita? And what does it mean for the future of education funding in Kansas?

Sam Zeff / KCUR

A new school funding formula for Kansas schools that would replace the current block grant scheme was filed just under the wire last month before lawmakers adjourned for a month-long recess.

Whether that bill passes or even gets a hearing is in question, but what's not in question is the concern educators and some legislators have about the 98-page bill.

Stephen Koranda, File Photo / KPR

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback has until April 8 to act on a school funding plan approved by legislators in hopes of satisfying a recent state Supreme Court order.

The Republican-dominated Legislature delivered the bill to the GOP governor's office Tuesday. The state constitution gives Brownback 10 days to review the measure.

Lawmakers approved the bill last week to give the Supreme Court adequate time to review it.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

The Kansas House and Senate approved a school funding plan before adjourning for their spring break. The votes send the bill to Governor Sam Brownback for consideration. The Kansas Supreme Court threatens to close Kansas schools if lawmakers don’t reduce funding inequalities.

The bill redistributes state money to reduce funding disparities between Kansas school districts. It makes sure no district loses overall state support, and some districts would get a boost. Legislative leaders believe the plan complies with the court and ensures stable budgets for schools.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

Kansas lawmakers are considering a new education funding plan that school districts are both praising and criticizing. The proposal shifts money between districts to reduce funding disparities. It also moves some money from another fund to make sure no district loses overall state support. Shawnee Mission School District Superintendent Jim Hinson appreciates that no districts would lose out.

“This bill allows us to have stability during very uncertain financial times, which is extremely important for us,” Hinson says.

Stephen Koranda

Committees in the Kansas House and Senate have advanced school funding plans designed to address a state Supreme Court order. The court told lawmakers to fix unconstitutional funding disparities between districts, or public schools would be closed this fall.

These new proposals redistribute funding and add a small amount of money to make sure no district loses overall state support.

Stephen Koranda / Kansas Public Radio

Kansas lawmakers have introduced a new school funding plan that tries to fund school districts more evenly without costing any of them money. Previous plans had redistributed money and left some districts with less overall funding.

Lawmakers are trying to find a way to reduce disparities between school districts following a Kansas Supreme Court ruling. The bill would redistribute state funding and tap an existing extraordinary needs fund. Republican Senator Ty Masterson says stakeholders made it clear that no district should lose money.

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