Education

Republicans in Kansas Clash Over How, Whether to Raise Money for Schools

By Daarel Burnette II — July 11, 2018 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

With yet another looming court order hanging over Kansas, Republican gubernatorial candidates Tuesday night sparred over whether to provide the state’s schools with hundreds of millions more in funding as the state supreme court ordered last month.

During a televised forum, according to the Associated Press, leading candidates for governor proposed that the state should give schools hundreds of millions more dollars, defy the court order, further crack down on school spending habits or reinstate draconian tax cuts. Other candidates proposed changing the state’s constitution so that the high court can no longer weigh into how the legislature spends its money.

It was another sign that, amid roiling teacher strikes and growing voter sentiment for public schools, Republicans across the nation are at odds over whether they should continue touting tax cuts that could hurt public school spending.

In other states, including Arizona, New York, Oklahoma and Texas, gubernatorial candidates have clashed over how to raise money for schools.

In Kansas, the state supreme court ruled last month in the Gannon v. Kansas ruling that the $548 million increase in public school funding over the next five years is constitutionally not enough. A leading education expert predicted this week that the state will have to provide $364 million more in order to comply with the court’s order.

Tuesday night, Kansas Gov. Jeff Colyer, who is running for re-election, appeared to be the most liberal of the candidates when it came to school funding. He defended the $548 million increase he and the legislature provided the state’s public schools this spring and said, if elected, he will work to phase in another estimated $364 million over five years, as the state supreme court last month ordered the legislature to do. He said he would do that using annual growth in tax revenues.

His opponents quickly went on the attack.

“Gov. Colyer signed a bill paying a $500 million ransom, thinking that, that would be enough,” said gubernatorial candidate Kris Kobach who also serves as Kansas’ secretary of state. “Look, this game is never going to end.”

Kobach said he would cut taxes and require districts to spend a higher portion of their money on the classroom.

“Kris Kobach doesn’t want to support additional money for schools,” Colyer countered. “I think Kansas schools need that money. Otherwise, his policy will close Kansas schools, particularly our rural schools.”

Kansas’ primary will take place Aug. 7.


Don’t miss another State EdWatch post. Sign up here to get news alerts in your email inbox. And make sure to follow @StateEdWatch on Twitter for the latest news from state K-12 policy and politics.

A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Data Webinar
Education Insights with Actionable Data to Create More Personalized Engagement
The world has changed during this time of pandemic learning, and there is a new challenge faced in education regarding how we effectively utilize the data now available to educators and leaders. In this session
Content provided by Microsoft
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
School & District Management Webinar
Accelerate Learning with Project-Based Learning
Earlier this year, the George Lucas Educational Foundation released four new studies highlighting how project-based learning (PBL) helps accelerate student learning—across age groups, multiple disciplines, and different socio-economic statuses. With this year’s emphasis on unfinished
Content provided by SmartLab Learning
School & District Management Live Online Discussion Principal Overload: How to Manage Anxiety, Stress, and Tough Decisions
According to recent surveys, more than 40 percent of principals are considering leaving their jobs. With the pandemic, running a school building has become even more complicated, and principals' workloads continue to grow. If we

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Gunman in Parkland School Massacre to Plead Guilty
The gunman who killed 14 students and three staff members at a Florida high school will plead guilty to their murders, his attorneys said.
4 min read
Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz is sworn in before pleading guilty, Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on all four criminal counts stemming from his attack on a Broward County jail guard in November 2018, Cruz's lawyers said Friday that he plans to plead guilty to the 2018 massacre at a Parkland high school.
Parkland school shooter Nikolas Cruz is sworn in before pleading guilty, Friday, Oct. 15, 2021, at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on all four criminal counts stemming from his attack on a Broward County jail guard in November 2018, Cruz's lawyers said Friday that he plans to plead guilty to the 2018 massacre at a Parkland high school.
Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun Sentinel via AP
Education California Makes Ethnic Studies a High School Requirement
California is among the first in the nation to require students to take a course in ethnic studies to get a diploma starting in 2029-30.
4 min read
FILE - In this Jan. 22, 2020, file photo, Democratic Assembly members, from left, James Ramos, Chris Holden Jose Medina, and Rudy Salas, Jr., right, huddle during an Assembly session in Sacramento, Calif. Medina's bill to make ethnic studies a high school requirement was signed into law by California Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday, Oct. 8, 2021. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)
Education California Requires Free Menstrual Products in Public Schools
The move comes as women’s rights advocates push nationwide for affordable access to pads, tampons, and other items.
1 min read
Tammy Compton restocks tampons at Compton's Market, in Sacramento, Calif., on June 22, 2016. California public schools and colleges must stock their restrooms with free menstrual products under a new law signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, Friday, Oct. 8, 2021.
Tammy Compton restocks tampons at Compton's Market, in Sacramento, Calif., on June 22, 2016. California public schools and colleges must stock their restrooms with free menstrual products under a new law signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, Friday, Oct. 8, 2021.
Rich Pedroncelli/AP
Education Florida to Dock School District Salaries for Requiring Masks
Florida is set to dock salaries and withhold funding from local school districts that defied Gov. Ron DeSantis' ban on mask mandates.
2 min read
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks, Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021, at the Doral Academy Preparatory School in Doral, Fla.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks, Tuesday, Sept. 14, 2021, at the Doral Academy Preparatory School in Doral, Fla.
Wilfredo Lee/AP