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School districts and unions are lobbying hard to resurrect Kansas’ outdated funding formula with a lot more money added but citizens clearly want something else.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

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

Education spending and KASB’s government entitlement mentality: Part 4

David DorseyEducation

In the first three installments of this series, KPI has thoroughly debunked the Kansas Association of School Boards cry for higher taxes based on what they call “declining investment in school funding.” In Part 1, Dave Trabert challenged KASB’s position that government, specifically schools in this case, has an inherent right to a given percentage of personal income. In Part … Read More

Public education funding and a government entitlement mentality – Part 3

David DorseyEducation

The Kansas Association of School Boards claims lagging tax revenues have led to “declining investment in school funding,” which is a euphemism for “we’re not getting all the money we want.” That’s the theme of the next installment of their 3-part essay, a trilogy that sets out to make the case for a tax increase in order to funnel more … Read More

Government’s entitlement mentality – Part 1

Dave TrabertEducation, Tax & Spending

To get a firm understanding of government’s entitlement mentality, imagine this conversation taking place at your neighbor’s front door. Susie:  “Yes?” Carmine: “Hi, my name is Carmine and I’m with the local school board.  I’m here to collect what you owe.” Susie: “What do you mean?  We paid our taxes.” Carmine: “On your income, sure, but your employer spent more … Read More

Non-KPERS funding sets another per-pupil record in 2015-16

David DorseyEducation

Just-spend-more proponents say KPERS spending shouldn’t count towards school funding, without acknowledging that non-KPERS funding set per-pupil records in 2014 and 2015.  And new data from the Kansas Department of Education shows another record was set last year. Total spending per-pupil did decline a bit last year, but only because of there was less spending on KPERS (which means districts … Read More

Per-pupil funding still exceeds $13K, 2016-17 estimated to be another record year

David DorseyEducation

Per-pupil spending once again exceeded $13 thousand in the 2015-16 school year and the 2016-17 year is expected to be another record year for total and per-pupil expenditures. This according to financial data received from the Kansas State Department of Education (KSDE). After four consecutive years of record spending, per-pupil funding dipped to $13,015 in 2015-16. However, the decrease can … Read More