• $3.7 billion tax increase set up by courts and schools

    $3.7 billion tax increase set up by courts and schools0

    Remember this fairy tale about Obamacare? “If you like your health care plan, you can keep it.”  The Kansas version of that hollow promise is ‘we can massively increase school funding without a tax increase.’ The harsh reality is that Kansas taxpayers are being set up for a $3.7 billion tax increase over the next

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  • Olathe school administrators’ big pay hike won’t help students

    Olathe school administrators’ big pay hike won’t help students0

    The Olathe school district had a $16 million payroll increase last year as part of the legislature’s 6-year / $1 billion funding increase offered up to appease the Kansas Supreme Court.  The new money is theoretically intended to improve student achievement but the Legislature (again) failed to include any real accountability measures to ensure money

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  • Gannon VI demand for school funding is off base

    Gannon VI demand for school funding is off base0

    The Kansas Department of Education (KSDE) says it will take another $364 million to satisfy the Gannon VI finding of inadequate funding, but based on the court’s own test of adequacy, there’s no legal basis for more school funding. In its June 2018 ruling on Gannon VI, the court said the state owes inflationary increases

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  • Courts, many elected officials ignore purpose of school funding

    Courts, many elected officials ignore purpose of school funding0

    The Kansas Constitution says the Legislature “…shall make suitable provision for finance of the educational interests of the state.”  There’s considerable disagreement over whether ‘suitable’ means an amount of money or just a system of finance, but we should be able to agree on the purpose of school funding.  The purpose is not to spend

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  • 2017 NAEP – small gain but long way to go

    2017 NAEP – small gain but long way to go0

    The 2017 NAEP results (National Assessment of Educational Progress) released last week show a few small gains for Kansas students but proficiency levels remain stubbornly low, especially for low income students.  Low income students, who are identified by Kansas education officials as being eligible for free or reduced lunch, gained considerable ground in 4th Grade

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  • What’s in the House school funding plan?

    What’s in the House school funding plan?0

    The House school funding plan that developed last week proposes to give schools $500 million more over five years in hope of appeasing the Kansas Supreme Court.  There would be an increase in special education funding but most of the money goes to increasing base state aid.  Ironically, a constitutional amendment was also introduced that

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