• State school funding per-pupil ranked #16 in U.S.

    State school funding per-pupil ranked #16 in U.S.0

    U.S. Census data shows Kansas had the 16th highest state school funding per-pupil in 2016 at $7,970, based on headcount enrollment and total state aid of $3.9 billion.  Legislators therefore provided state aid that was 22 percent above the national average of $6,546 back in 2016 and KSDE estimates state aid will be $4.5 billion

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  • A $2 Billion Tax Increase Inbound: How Would It Impact You?

    A $2 Billion Tax Increase Inbound: How Would It Impact You?0

    Have you heard of the incoming tax increase? To maintain a statutorily required 7.5% ending balance, policymakers must find a way to close a $2 billion gap and slow the rate of state spending. The overspending includes an initial $1.3 billion shortfall , a $115 million KPERS payment, and the $270 million in new demands

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  • Solving the Kansas Budget Crisis

    Solving the Kansas Budget Crisis0

    Simply removing the Governor’s proposal won’t solve the state budget. Policymakers must find a way to reduce spending by roughly $518 million over four years. We’ve written previously on the Kansas budget debate with a clear-eyed look at the impact of different proposals. The key moving forward is to close the gap remaining in the

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  • Different look at state assessment results provides same conclusion

    Different look at state assessment results provides same conclusion0

    Much of the focus on state assessment scores is how low-income students are performing and achievement gaps – and deservedly so. Nevertheless, the Kansas Supreme Court’s current Gannon rulings all but demand a continued evaluation of overall achievement. The justices have staked out a claim that there is a causal relationship between money and outcomes.

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  • State assessment scores drop again despite infusion of court-ordered money

    State assessment scores drop again despite infusion of court-ordered money0

    Now that the 2018 state assessment scores have finally been released by KSDE, this statement by the Kansas Supreme Court can be, pardon the expression, put to the test. That is because K-12 spending in the 2017-18 school year increased by more than $400 million, a 6.7% increase, to $13,620 per pupil. Despite the spike

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  • Kansas Freedom Index provides legislative transparency

    Kansas Freedom Index provides legislative transparency0

    Speaking at a gathering of legislators and policy experts from multiple states recently, I was asked why the Republican-dominated Kansas legislature raised taxes last year instead of making government more efficient.  In response, I asked, “What’s a Republican?” We all had a good chuckle, but the sad truth is that party labels don’t mean much

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