At-risk overhaul needed in education finance law

David DorseyEducationLeave a Comment

As the Legislature works through the arduous process of putting together a new K-12 education funding system, opportunities abound. One of those is the chance to overhaul one of the largest components, and biggest failures, of the old formula – the At-risk program. Why was the old program a failure? The old At-risk program was ineffective, inefficient and confusing. It … Read More

New school funding formula would cost $965 million

Dave TrabertEducationLeave a Comment

Kansas school officials and teacher unions came out in strong support on Wednesday for House Bill 2270, a proposed new school funding formula that would cost taxpayers $965 million over a 4-year phase in.  Some supporters expressed concern that the big price tag wasn’t enough but said the plan was a good starting point. Legislators terminated the old formula in … Read More

Kansans want school funding formula to hold districts accountable

Dave TrabertEducationLeave a Comment

School districts and unions are lobbying hard to resurrect Kansas’ outdated funding formula with a lot more money added but citizens clearly want something else.  A new market research study released last week shows that Kansans overwhelmingly want a school funding formula that holds districts accountable for spending money efficiently and for improving outcomes.  SurveyUSA conducted the study on behalf … Read More

2017 Public Education Fact Book

adminEducation, Research1 Comment

KPI’s fifth annual Public Education Fact Book is a one-stop shop for data on public school information from The Sunflower State. Numerous scientific surveys show that citizens are grossly misinformed on many pertinent facts of public education in Kansas. Aid and spending per-pupil are much higher than many Kansans believe, and student achievement is lower than understood. This fact book … Read More

Innovative schools doing nothing all districts couldn’t do with no evidence of increased student achievement

David DorseyEducation

Q. Is there anything innovative schools are doing that all other non-innovative schools couldn’t also be doing? A. No. Although not a direct quote, that was part of a Q & A discussion between members of the House Education Committee and Coalition of Innovative School District (CISD) chairman Bill Mullins during CISD’s annual report to the Legislature. Members from both … Read More

State of the State puts students, citizens first

Dave TrabertEducation, Tax & Spending

Governor Brownback’s State of the State address notably emphasized that students and citizens should come first, not government.  That sentiment created a great deal of heartburn for the many legislators and special interests who prefer big tax increases, upwards of $1 billion more in spending and no accountability for schools to improve outcomes but it was welcomed by those who … Read More

Student achievement crisis continues

David DorseyEducation

There is an achievement crisis in the Kansas education system that must be reversed if our students are to be prepared for the demands of the dynamic work environments the future promises. The Kansas State Department of Education tells us that in three short years, 71% of jobs in Kansas will require postsecondary education or training. However, according to KSDE, … Read More

School funding formula must start from scratch

Dave TrabertEducation

Some school officials and legislators may be planning to modify the old school funding formula rather than write a brand new formula in 2017. But if they do, it likely would be found unconstitutional. The Kansas Supreme Court says adequacy of funding “is met when the public education financing system provided by the Legislature for grades K-12 – through structure … Read More

KC Star scores media bias trifecta

Dave TrabertEducation

The Kansas City Star rang in the New Year with a media bias trifecta in their relentless push for higher taxes and more government spending.  They withheld information that contradicts claims made in the story, chose not to interview anyone who doesn’t believe school funding should increase and they threw in a false claim for good measure. The poverty issues … Read More

What Trump’s Education Secretary could mean for Kansas school choice

David DorseyEducation

It appears president-elect Trump will not jettison the U.S. Department of Education. Too bad. However, the news is not all discouraging because Mr. Trump has tapped Michigan’s Betsy DeVos as Education Secretary. Ms. DeVos has a strong record in the area of school choice, having led the charge in her home state’s first school choice program in the 1990s. This … Read More