Politics at its worst

The bill to eliminate the existing school funding formula and replace it for two years with block grants has passed the KS House (after a long and questionable delay while one more vote was sought), and will shortly surely pass the KS Senate. This bill purports to give school districts more money, more flexibility, and a steady source of income.

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The Rush to Get Out from Under the Supreme Court - Legislative Update

This ninth week in the Kansas 2015 legislative session is marked by another decisive blow in the contentious battle to re-define Kansas. The very nature of our K12 public education system is awaiting final vote in the House chambers, today at 8 am.  If Thursday’s March 12 vote is any indication, 64 state representatives have voted in favor of taking a flying leap off the cliff.  The simple majority calls for 63 votes.

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ALERT - Email now to oppose block grants!

Block grants are on the KS House floor right now, this very moment, and we need you to contact your representatives in the legislature. Our moderates are under intense pressure to support this scheme, and they must hear from us!

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Testimony Opposing Block Grant Bills

This is the testimony being submitted today by MainStream in opposition to HB 2403 and SB 273, the block grant bills being heard in the Kansas Legislature today.

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Here we go

Last week saw a lot of action, and this week, though the Legislature didn't come back until Wednesday, has already seen some movement on the big three: the budget, education finance, and judicial selection.

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Why the Formula Works

You've heard a lot about the school funding formula in Kansas. Be aware. Some of the leadership in Kansas wants to discredit the formula, in favor of limited government and reduced state funding for public education and other services. Allowing the formula to be discarded is a mistake. 

Here’s how the formula works.

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Turnaround week and the DREAM Act under fire - Legislative Update

Kansas is about halfway through the 2015 legislative session, having just finished week seven.  This midpoint is known as Turnaround Week, which refers to a deadline requiring most bills to pass out of their chamber of origin. The operative word is MOST bills. Select legislation remained dormant, such as those pertaining to the Battle for Impartial Elections, only to be resurrected later through other means, including amendments, exempt committees and last minute bundling.

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Turnaround

No, it's not what you hope, though we did have a small bit of success this week (see below). We haven't turned this ship around, not yet. "Turnaround" is the term used for this week in the Kansas Legislature, by the end of which the work of the various committees must be done, and bills must be out of the "chamber of origin." House bills need to be ready for the Senate, and Senate bills ready for the House. This is the halfway point of the session.

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Testimony opposing HB 2292 - Reversing curriculum standards

This is testimony being delivered today to the House Education Committee opposing HB 2292, which looks to develop curriculum standards (this is an anti-Common Core bill).

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Restore the revenue. It is that simple.

Last week we warned you about the work that was being done in the Kansas Legislature to dismantle public education in the name of maintaining the income tax cuts of 2012. And we also told you to watch out for the distraction bills, each critical in its own right, but meant to keep you from seeing the big picture.

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