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A letter to Governor Sam Brownback

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A letter was sent today to Governor Brownback by The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights and the Education Law Center.

Letter on School Finance to Gov Brownback 1-15-14


Kansas Supreme Court Lawsuit Ruling May Have an Impact on School Budgets

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PITTSBURG, KS.— A Kansas Supreme Court ruling on a lawsuit against the state legislature could have an effect on school budgets. The ruling will focus on whether the legislature went back on a promise to give more aid to public classrooms. Currently, Kansas schools are funded less than $3,900 per student, down $600 from five years ago. Pittsburg School District Superintendent Dr. Destry Brown says the district has had to cut programs from all six schools, which affects just under 3,000 students

“Suitable funding would pay for our students to be able to be educated and receive opportunities that they need in order to move on and be productive,” said Dr. Destry Brown, Pittsburg School District Superintendent.

Dr. Brown says a decision from the Kansas Supreme Court could come any day now.

Brownback To Push ‘Targeted’ Approach To Education In 2014 Session

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The 2014 Kansas legislative session kicks off Monday, and Gov. Sam Brownback says education is at the top of his priorities, including his recently unveiled reading initiative and instituting statewide full-day kindergarten.

“I think the public wants to see us produce high-quality products, here from government. And the core function of state government is education,” Brownback said in an exclusive interview. “We put over half of our state general fund in K-12, but we need to see it produce and not just put money in. And, not ask for any results.”

The conversation with Gov. Brownback continues below:

School-finance lawsuit hangs over 2014 legislative session

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By Dion Lefler and Bryan Lowry
The Wichita Eagle
Published Sunday, Jan. 12, 2014, at 6:51 a.m.
Updated Monday, Jan. 13, 2014, at 7:12 a.m.

Depending on what the court decides, the outcome could be anything from more money for schools to a constitutional showdown over the balance of power between the courts and the Legislature.

Although they use different metaphors, Democrats and Republicans alike say the school ruling, whenever it comes, will influence just about everything that happens under the dome this election year.

5 things to know about Kansas legislative session

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SCHOOL FINANCE RULING: Legislators are waiting on a decision from the Kansas Supreme Court over school funding. Attorneys for the plaintiff parents and school districts say lawmakers failed to fulfill promises made in 2006 to adequately fund schools. The state says no actual harm has been done to students by education cuts and that the state did its best to fund schools in the wake of the Great Recession. A ruling either way will have significant consequences. If the plaintiffs prevail, the state may be forced to take money away from other programs or initiatives — such as income tax cuts — to pay for schools. Some Republican lawmakers say they’re prepared to defy such a ruling.

Kansas Lawmakers Await Court Ruling on School Funding

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State May Have to Increase Funding for K-12 Education by 14%



Updated Jan. 12, 2014 7:51 p.m. ET

After passing some of the most aggressive tax cuts in the nation, Kansas lawmakers are watching the state’s top court for a ruling that could force education spending to skyrocket.

The Kansas Supreme Court will determine whether the state must comply with a lower-court ruling requiring the GOP-led legislature and Republican Gov. Sam Brownback to increase annual funding for K-12 education by an estimated $450 million, or 14% above the previous year’s level. The timing of the ruling is unclear, but it could come to dominate the state legislative session that opens Monday.

Write to Mark Peters at

School funding case holds the key for Kansas

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January 10
The Kansas City Star

The direction of Kansas school funding hinges on a single word.

What is “suitable” state support for local schools?

 The Kansas Supreme Court is pondering a case that turns on the state constitutional mandate to “make suitable provision for finance of the educational interests of the state.”
 Its ruling, which could come any day, will focus on whether the Kansas Legislature reneged on a promise made eight years ago to pump up aid to public classrooms and live up to the Kansas Constitution.
 Read more here: