Kansas Department of Education

Stephen Koranda file photo

Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback urged school districts on Tuesday to move more money into the classroom and hold down the administrative costs of running their schools.

The Republican governor's comments came after he addressed educators at a training session in Wichita and lauded the Kansas Reading Roadmap initiative, a program that aims to improve reading levels in grades K-3.

Larry Darling, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas Highway Patrol is making the rounds in school districts across the state, inspecting school buses and other vehicles that transport students.

Troopers began their vehicle inspections this week and will continue through the first days of school in August.

The goal is to make sure every bus and school vehicle will load, transport and unload students safely. Lt. Adam Winters says troopers check for defects in equipment and mechanical conditions.

DC Central Kitchen, flickr Creative Commons

The Kansas State Department of Education and four non-profit partners are going back to the drawing board in search of ways to keep rural children from going hungry when school is out. The Heartland Health Monitor’s Bryan Thompson reports.

Federal officials last month rejected a proposed demonstration project aimed at boosting participation in the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Summer Food Service Program. It sought to allow ten summer meal sites in rural Kansas to change the rules for participation.

aptmetaphor / Flickr

 

The number of homeless students in Kansas public schools continued an upward trend during the 2013-2014 school year, according to a report issued by the Kansas Department of Education. The problem is seen in 155 school districts. 

Kansas education officials are preparing new regulations so school districts can hire more technical education instructors.

The state Department of Education is writing changes that would create rules for private-sector professionals to receive licenses to teach in public schools.

The Department of Ed is designing the changes to help districts hire people who have industry certification or career experience in technical fields like plumbing or welding.

People receiving the licenses could then teach on a full- or part-time basis.

The Kansas Department of Education says overall scores by K-12 students on standardized math and reading tests have slipped this year.

The Kansas Board of Education reviewed new federal rules Tuesday on food sales in schools slated to take effect next year.

The healthy snack requirements govern the kinds of food items that can be sold to students during the school day. Kansas already has requirements in place that in many cases meet or exceed the new federal rules.

Cheryl Johnson, the director of child nutrition and wellness at the Kansas Department of Education, told the board that much of the work in Kansas will be creating exemptions for certain activities, such as fundraising bake sales in schools.

Researchers at the University of Kansas have been hired by the State Department of Education to develop a model anti-bullying policy for use in schools statewide.

All Kansas schools must have an anti-bullying policy, but coming up with effective policies and practices to meet that requirement can get complicated. Researchers at the University of Kansas plan to launch a statewide series of meetings in October to present educators with a model policy to build their own programs around.

The Kansas Department of Education wants to study a proposal to make it easier for out-of-state teachers to become licensed in Kansas.

The Council of Chief State School Officers, a national organization of state education agency officials, issued a report listing 10 recommendations for how states could improve the teaching profession. One of those calls for allowing reciprocity across state lines. Another encourages states to use data collection, analysis, reporting to improve teacher programs and keep them accountable.

Kansas education officials are asking the state's attorney general for guidance about how to implement a new law about "innovative" schools.

Brad Neuenswander, the Deputy Commissioner for the state Department of Education, told the State Board of Education Wednesday the agency is trying to figure out how to implement a new law that creates a coalition of so-called "innovative districts."

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