Education

Education
10:33 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Brownback Visits Kansas Universities

Governor Sam Brownback will be visiting universities in Kansas on Monday.

Eileen Hawley, a Brownback spokesperson, says he’ll be meeting with university officials and talking about the importance of higher education in the state.

"The universities help drive the economy," Hawley says. "They provide a highly skilled work force and they create the next generations of teachers, doctors and business people so its really important for us to invest and have a good vision for higher education in Kansas. " 

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Education
10:23 am
Fri April 11, 2014

Cowley College President Clark Williams Resigns

After less than a year on the job, Cowley College President Clark Williams has suddenly resigned.

Williams resigned from the college in Arkansas City yesterday after complaints about his decision to eliminate the college’s soccer programs.

More than 200 people attended a special meeting of the Cowley College Board of Trustees Wednesday to express concern about the college's direction. The trustees met in closed session and no action was taken at the meeting.

Executive vice president of business services Tony Crouch will serve as interim president, effective today.

Education
10:30 am
Thu April 10, 2014

Kansas Education Commissioner Diane DeBacker Steps Down To Take Job In Abu Dhabi

Kansas Education Commissioner Diane DeBacker is resigning to become an adviser to the chief education official in Abu Dhabi.

DeBacker told the State Board of Education yesterday she will step down on May 14th.

Debacker says she was recruited to become the adviser to the director general of the Abu Dhabi Education Council in the United Arab Emirates.

DeBacker is a 53-year-old Kansas native who joined the State Department of Education in 2003. She was named acting commissioner in 2009, and the board then named her commissioner in 2010.

Education
10:55 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Kansas Legislature Passes Education Bill

The state Legislature narrowly backed a bill last night that would boost funding to poor school districts and eliminate tenure for teachers.

Teachers wearing red shirts looked on in protest as 63 House members - the minimum needed - voted in favor of the bill, while 57 voted against it.

Hours earlier, the Senate approved it with a 22-16 vote. It needed 21 votes to pass.

The bill now heads to Governor Sam Brownback, who has already released a statement praising it.

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Education
10:36 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Lawmakers Vote To Make It Easier To Fire Teachers

Credit Stephen Koranda

The Kansas Senate has voted to make it easier to fire teachers. 

The amendment was added to an education funding bill.

Senate President Susan Wagle, a Wichita Republican, supported the proposal. She said schools should be allowed to operate like a private business, which can mostly hire and fire people at will.

"When you have a teacher that is impeding that system I believe an administrator should be able to let them go. That’s what happens in private schools,” said Wagle.

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Education
10:12 am
Fri April 4, 2014

State Senate Advances Education Funding Bill

Credit Stephen Koranda

The Kansas Senate has advanced a plan to respond to a state Supreme Court ruling on education funding.

The court said lawmakers created inequalities between school districts by cutting certain types of education funds.

The bill would shift money into funds aimed at reducing those disparities.

Dollars would be moved from school transportation as well as other areas of the budget. Senator Ty Masterson, an Andover Republican, said they are prioritizing spending.

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Education
10:02 am
Fri April 4, 2014

House Committee Revises Funding Plan To Provide Aid To Local School Districts

The House Appropriations Committee has revised its school funding plan to be more generous in providing aid to local school districts.

The State Supreme Court ruled in March that lawmakers created inequalities between school districts by cutting education funds.

The bill is designed to satisfy the ruling’s call to increase funding.

It contains an additional $141 million dollars in aid for those districts for the next school year.

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Education
12:37 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

Kansas House Education Plan Stalls

Credit Stephen Koranda

The Kansas Senate will debate an education funding bill on Thursday, while a similar bill has hit a snag in the House.

The bills are a response to a state Supreme Court ruling saying Kansas created inequalities between wealthy and poorer school districts when lawmakers cut education funding.

Leaders in both chambers had been planning to hold debates on Thursday.

Both bills use a mix of new money and dollars shifted from other areas to try to comply with the court ruling and reduce disparities between districts.

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Education
12:26 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

State Math And Reading Assessments Slowed Down By A Series Of Cyber Attacks

Kansas schools already struggling to administer math and reading assessment tests have another problem now.

State education officials say unknown people launched cyber attacks against the tests.

The attackers slowed down or disabled networks used to administer the tests by overwhelming them with traffic, rather than hacking into them.

The attacks started Thursday and briefly stopped on Sunday.

Testing ran smoothly on Monday but the cyber attacks resumed on Tuesday.

Education
10:11 am
Tue April 1, 2014

Kansans Walk 60 Miles To Show Support For Kansas Public Schools

Education advocates walk to the Kansas Statehouse for a ceremonial end to the trip.
Credit Stephen Koranda

Four parents and a teacher have walked from Johnson County to the Kansas Statehouse in Topeka to show their support for Kansas public schools.

The Kansans who made the 60-mile trek say they want lawmakers to reverse more of the funding cuts made during the recession.

Devin Wilson of Lenexa says he's a lifelong Kansan and a lifelong Republican.

Wilson wants lawmakers to increase funding to help reverse the trend of increased class sizes.

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