Kansas Ranked 6th for State School Funding

Dave TrabertEducationLeave a Comment

New data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows Kansas had the 6th highest share of school funding provided by state government in 2015.  State school funding comprised 66 percent of total funding in Kansas, while the national average for state school funding was 47 percent.  The national average for local taxpayer support was 45 percent but Kansas local taxpayers only … Read More

The new school funding formula (SB 19) ensures another lawsuit

David DorseyEducationLeave a Comment

More than a decade ago the Kansas Supreme Court took the unprecedented step of injecting itself into the legislative process, ordering the Legislature to cough up an additional $853 million per year to fund K-12 education in its landmark Montoy decision. The Legislature caved, allowing the Court to usurp the constitutional authority of the power of the purse from that … Read More

New school finance law will do nothing to improve outcomes of at-risk students

David DorseyEducationLeave a Comment

The Legislature blew it. Given a golden opportunity to give serious attention to the issue of low performance and the huge achievement gaps of Kansas at-risk students, the Legislature instead chose to appease the Supreme Court through an increase in funding. The new school finance law – SB 19 – is full of language aimed at improving educational outcomes of … Read More

New School Funding Formula is Bad for Students and Citizens

Dave TrabertEducationLeave a Comment

The new school funding formula on its way to the Governor’s desk could have been a lot worse if the education lobby got all it wanted, but it’s still bad legislation for students and citizens.  The funding is much higher than necessary, causing citizens to be excessively taxed, and most important, schools are not held accountable for improving outcomes. The … Read More

Education funding bill overspends, fails to hold schools accountable

David DorseyEducationLeave a Comment

The new K-12 education bill passed by the Kansas Legislature and sent to Governor Brownback for signature fails to hold schools accountable for improving student achievement and by failing to correct a math error, overspends by hundreds of millions going forward. Instead the law focuses on satisfying a fickle Supreme Court. The law – SB 19 – is not “reasonably … Read More

School Debt Sets New Record at $5.56 Billion

Dave TrabertEducation

Kansas school bond debt set another record for the 2015-16 school year at $5.56 billion spread across 183 districts.  Data provided by the Kansas Department of Education shows school districts loaded up on a lot of new debt since 2005: $5.2 billion in new bond debt was issued by 149 districts. Debt Service payments totaled $4.9 billion. Bonded indebtedness increased $2.4 billion … Read More

Math error could cost taxpayers $83 million per year

Dave TrabertEducation

Senate Bill 251, which is the Kansas Senate’s proposed new school funding formula, contains an unintentional math error that could cost citizens $83 million per year in unnecessary taxation if not corrected.  The methodology for calculating Base State Aid Per Pupil (BSAPP) in the new formula is based on actual spending of 41 districts identified that exceeded specific outcomes. Kansas … Read More

A tax on your income tax?

Dave TrabertTax & Spending

A legislative session that has seen a wide range of anti-freedom proposals – e.g., allowing government to set fringe benefit standards for private employers, requiring employees to make donations to unions, stripping citizens of their right to vote on property tax increases – just produced another jaw-dropping suggestion.  The House Taxation Committee wants to impose an income tax on your … Read More

Legislature may need course correction on K-12 education funding bill

David DorseyEducation

The Kansas legislature has reached what they term first adjournment, a fancy term for a three-week recess. Lawmakers will take a deep breath and reconvene in early May, faced with a full-plated agenda that will feature approving a new K-12 education finance law attempting to satisfy the Supreme Court’s decree of a having in place a constitutionally adequate funding mechanism … Read More

KASB Funding Proposal Ignores Legal Test of Adequacy

David DorseyEducation

The Kansas Association of School Boards (KASB) provided written testimony to the House K-12 Education Budget Committee as the committee held hearings on HB 2410, a would-be new K-12 education funding law. They included a funding proposal to increase K-12 dollars by a whopping $778.7 million per year and tried to justify their wish by tying it to the Supreme … Read More