Kansas' public schools could receive a slight increases in per-student spending starting in fiscal year 2015.
The State House Appropriations Committee accepted a subcommittee's report on K-12 spending Monday morning. The subcommittee's budget allocates more than $3 billion dollars for all public schools. Funding per pupil would remain at $3,838 for fiscal year 2014 but would increase marginally by $14 per pupil starting July 1, 2014.
Gov. Sam Brownback is seeking mediation in a lawsuit over school funding.
A district court recently ruled that the state isn't meeting constitutional requirements and needs to increase funding for Kansas schools.
Brownback asked the state Attorney General to seek a hold on the ruling, so all parties involved have time to study solutions. The filings also request the court to appoint a mediator, in attempt to reach an agreement outside of courtroom.
The school funding lawsuit was filed on behalf of students, parents and four school districts.
Butler Community College leaders are considering a proposal to ban smoking and tobacco on all of its campuses. A task force presented its findings last week to the college's Board of Trustees. The board could vote on the issue in March.
Butler currently bans smoking inside campus buildings, but smoking is allowed outside 25 feet from the buildings. Bill Rinkenbaugh, one of the school's vice presidents, estimates the college would spend between $25,000 - $30,000 on signs and educational materials to implement the ban.
About a dozen Kansas colleges have banned tobacco.
According to Education Week's annual rankings, Kansas' public schools are 37th in the country.
The publication released its 2013 "Quality Counts" rankings today, and Kansas' overall grade was a C. The state received a B minus for its standards, assessments and a category called "chance for success." Kansas earned an A for early childhood education, but an F for "college readiness." The rest of the categories were mixed, with Kansas getting a D+ for K-12 achievement, a B+ for workforce readiness, and an A minus for school accountability.
KU has connected Eduroam, a service that allows faculty and students to log onto a wireless network at any other participating research or education institution. Conversely, visitors from Eduroam partner institutions can connect to KU's wireless network.
Eduroam started Europe and now boasts 6,000 member organizations in 58 countries, including 78 institutions in the U.S. KU is one of only a few schools in the Midwest using the service.
Wichita Public Schools is accepting nominations for the 2012-13 Distinguished Classroom Teacher Award to honor new and experienced teachers.
The Distinguished Classroom Teacher Award program recognizes outstanding teachers who affect the quality of education of more than 50,000 students in the Wichita school district. Awards are given in seven categories: new elementary teacher, new secondary teacher, primary teacher, intermediate, middle school and high school teacher and support teacher.
The list of needed repairs at Kansas' public universities is declining amid increased spending and low bids from contractors scrambling for work.
Nearly 40 percent of regents' university buildings were built during the 1960s and 1980s when there was huge growth in higher education. With those buildings now aging and requiring major repairs, the Kansas Legislature approved funding in 2007. Federal stimulus money also was used for repairs, but from 2008 to 2011, the repair estimate grew to $904 million from $825 million.