education funding

11:24 am
Mon March 9, 2015

Report: New Proposal Cuts Money For Poorest School Districts, Protects Wealthiest

Credit Larry Darling, flickr Creative Commons

A proposal for changing how Kansas public schools are funded appears to cut money from most of the state's poorest school districts while protecting the wealthiest.

The Topeka Capital-Journal examined the effect of a Republican plan to replace the state's existing per-student formula for distributing its money to 286 school districts, which is currently designed to ensure that poor districts don't fall behind wealthy ones.

Read more
1:20 pm
Fri March 6, 2015

Kansas Lawmakers Waiting For Analysis Of GOP Schools Plan

Credit Rupert Ganzer, flickr Creative Commons

Kansas legislators are waiting for a detailed analysis of how a plan from Republican leaders to overhaul education funding would affect individual school districts.

The Kansas Department of Education was expected to release the analysis Friday. The department regularly reviews school finance legislation and analyzes its effects.

The GOP plan was outlined Thursday and would replace the state's existing per-student formula for distributing its aid to 286 school districts.

Read more
1:31 pm
Wed March 4, 2015

Kansas Districts Want Lower Court To Stay On Schools Lawsuit

Credit alamosbasement, flickr Creative Commons

School districts suing the state of Kansas over education funding are telling the state Supreme Court that they want a lower court to continue handling their lawsuit.

Four districts asked the Supreme Court Tuesday to reject the state's request that the high court handle the lawsuit instead of a three-judge Shawnee County District Court panel.

The districts sued the state in 2010.

The lower-court panel ruled in December that the state is not adequately funding schools.

The state asked the panel to reconsider in January.

Read more
12:45 pm
Tue March 3, 2015

Kansas Session Hits Halfway Point With No School Funding Plan

Credit Stephen Koranda

Kansas Lawmakers have passed the halfway point in the 2015 session without unveiling a proposal to rewrite the state’s school funding formula. Governor Sam Brownback has proposed an overhaul, but first he says lawmakers should freeze spending and issue block grants to schools. As Stephen Koranda reports, a proposal could be coming soon.

Governor Brownback and some Republicans have been unhappy with unexpected cost increases for Kansas education. A block grant proposal would give them time to write a new plan while keeping funding steady.

Read more
12:26 pm
Wed February 25, 2015

Kansas Bill Penalizing Profane School Materials Moves Ahead

Credit Robert S. Digby, flickr Creative Commons

Teachers no longer would be exempt from criminal charges for showing students materials deemed to be harmful to minors under a bill given first-round approval in the Kansas Senate.

Teachers could be charged for any materials thought to be too sexual or too profane for minors.

Republican Senator Forrest Knox of Altoona said he supported the bill.

Knox says teachers should not be protected from showing materials that would draw penalties in other contexts.

Read more
12:48 pm
Thu February 19, 2015

Kansas Files Appeal Over Education Funding Ruling

The state of Kansas has filed an appeal of the ruling that found the state isn't spending enough money on its public schools.

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt announced the filing on Wednesday.

The Shawnee County District Court panel declared in its December ruling that the current funding is "inadequate from any rational perspective of the evidence."

The panel said the evidence suggests base state aid should increase to at least $4,654 per student - which would amount to about $548 million dollars per year.

5:03 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

USD 259 Reacts To Impending Funding Cuts

Credit Wichita Public Schools

Governor Sam Brownback announced on Thursday that he was cutting funding for Kansas public schools at rate of 1.5 percent. That means a reduction of $28 million in funding across the board. KMUW’s Sean Sandefur reports how this might affect Wichita Public Schools…

The statewide cuts will take effect on March 7.

Wichita School Board President Sheril Logan says her district must clear $3 million from their budget, and they’ll need to do it quickly.

Read more
1:16 pm
Wed February 4, 2015

KS Senate Committee Hears Testimony On K-12 School Funding Change

Topeka Public Schools Superintendent Julie Ford.
Credit Stephen Koranda

A Kansas Senate committee is looking at rewriting part of the public school funding formula. The Legislature passed a bill increasing one type of school aid last year, but when it was all said and done, the cost had risen beyond their initial estimates. As Stephen Koranda reports, the bill would change how it's calculated and reduce that type of education spending by $40 million dollars.

Read more
12:14 pm
Mon February 2, 2015

KS Senate Considering Bill To Trim Education Funding

Senator Ty Masterson speaking to reporters last month.
Credit Stephen Koranda

A proposal in the Kansas Senate would cut back aid to school districts in the current fiscal year. Lawmakers passed legislation increasing one type of school funding last year in response to a court ruling. But as Stephen Koranda reports, when all the variables were finalized, the cost was more than expected.

Some Kansas lawmakers are unhappy because they thought they’d be adding about $130 million dollars, but the cost ballooned. Here’s Republican state Senator Ty Masterson speaking last month.

Read more
6:30 am
Wed January 28, 2015

The Rapidly Changing Landscape Of Kansas Taxes

Governor Sam Brownback
Credit Stephen Koranda / File Photo

Twenty-four hours in politics is like a year in ordinary life, when surprising and unexpected happenings occur.

Governor Brownback asserted in his State of the State speech that the “march to zero” on income taxes would continue in Kansas. Twenty-four hours later, the administration announced that this “march” would be slowed.

Two new tax proposals were also announced. One is a 300 percent increase on a pack of cigarettes, from 79 cents to $2.29. The other raises the tax on liquor from eight percent to 12 percent.

Read more