School Funding Ruling May Cause Devastating Tax Hikes

Dave TrabertEducationLeave a Comment

The Kansas Supreme Court’s recent Gannon school funding ruling, if endorsed by legislators, would cause devastating tax hikes on top of record-setting tax increases just passed.  The Court cited vast differences between the new money appropriated by the Legislature ($293 million more in FY 2019) and the amount demanded by school districts (at least $1.7 billion) and the State Board … Read More

School Lawsuits: Over $7 Million Diverted from Classrooms to Lawyers

Dave TrabertEducation

The Gannon and Montoy school lawsuits have resulted in school districts diverting $7.3 million that could have been spent on Instruction to their lawyers suing between the 2005 and 2017 school years.  The data is provided by one of the districts’ law firms – Somers, Robb and Robb.  The downloadable listing below indicates over $300,000 more is already committed for … Read More

Blue Valley School District Distorts Spending Facts

Dave TrabertEducation

A KSBH-TV story about the Blue Valley school district spending $130,000 in legal fees to avoid paying $23,000 for a blind student’s braille books says “Blue Valley School District’s total operating budget for the current school year is about $200 million.”  The reporter, Jessica McMaster, linked to her source on the Blue Valley web site and understandably relied on the … Read More

Are you ready for another tax increase?

Dave TrabertTax & Spending

Unless legislators change their tax-and-spending-spree ways, Kansans have another big tax increase coming in the near future.  The nearly $500 million spending increase just approved for fiscal years 2017 through 2019 pushes General Fund spending to $6.609 billion; that’s $1.3 billion more than if spending had just been increased for inflation since FY 1995. Kansas Legislative Research Department says the … Read More

School administrators in Kansas got large pay hikes last year

Dave TrabertEducation

Kansans who’ve been bombarded with media reports of schools being underfunded might be surprised to learn that some school administrators received large pay hikes in the 2017 school year.  Open Records requests submitted to to 21 districts representing 50 percent of students statewide produced multiple examples of school administrators receiving more than a 5 percent pay hike, several of which … Read More

Pay Hikes at Johnson County Community College

Dave TrabertEducation

The 25 highest paid employees at Johnson County Community College each took home well in excess of $100,000 in the 2017 school year and some of them received double-digit pay increases.  Data provided through an Open Records request and posted to KansasOpenGov.org shows President & CEO Joseph Sopcich was paid just shy of $325,000.  Two welding trainers made the top … Read More

Kansas City School District Boosts Pay but Not for Teachers

Dave TrabertEducation

The Kansas City school district, one of several Kansas districts using taxpayer money to sue for more funding, managed to provide some pretty hefty pay increases for top management last year.  Total pay for the Kansas City school district increased by 3.8 percent to $168.8 million but teachers saw very little increase.  Collectively, those identified by the district as teachers … Read More

KCKCC Pay Jumps 11 Percent

Dave TrabertEducation

An Open Records request of the Kansas City, KS Community College shows an 11 percent increase in the KCKCC pay for the fiscal year ended June 30, 2017.   The adjacent table of the 25 highest paid employees shows pay changes ranging from a 1 percent decline to a 217.8 percent increase.  Eleven of the twenty-five highest paid employees received a … Read More

Schools Defend Massive Income Tax Hike

Dave TrabertEducation

As Kansans collect smaller paychecks this month because of the massive income tax hike passed by the Legislature, school districts’ lobbying arm is defending it as an ‘investment.’  The Kansas Association of School Boards recently said the tax increase “…has been defended by many as necessary to stabilize the budget and comply with a Supreme Court decision on school funding.” … Read More