Law & Courts

Kansas Supreme Court Orders Higher Spending for Schools

By Robert C. Johnston — June 03, 2005 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Saying time was of the essence, the Kansas Supreme Court ruled unanimously in a decision posted online June 3 that the state legislature has failed to satisfy a court mandate to adequately finance K-12 public schools. The court ordered lawmakers to double the increase in school aid approved for the 2005-06 school year by July 1.

The education budget for fiscal 2006, which became law on April 16 without Gov. Kathleen Sebelius’ signature, raises K-12 state aid by about $142 million, to nearly $2 billion over the current fiscal year. Under the new court-ordered remedy, the amount of the increase would total $285 million.

That increase is one-third of the $853 million recommended by a consulting firm retained by the legislature in 2001 to determine the cost of educating students in Kansas.

Funding beyond the 2005-06 school year will be contingent upon the results of a cost study ordered by the legislature this year. The court said that if that study is not completed in time for lawmakers to act on it in the 2006 session, or is not considered adequate by the court or is not acted on, the remaining two-thirds—or $568 million—in added funding recommended in the 2001 cost study could be ordered by the court.

A summary provided by the court said that the Kansas state board of education’s suggestion that the 2005 legislation be accepted as an interim step was “initially attractive.” The court, however, concluded that “… we cannot continue to ask current Kansas students to be patient. The time for their education is now.”

The court also delayed provisions passed by the legislature this year that would have authorized districts to raise local property taxes for education above state caps, and would have allowed for weighted state aid to reflect variations in local cost of living and radical shifts in local enrollment.

The June 3 decision is the latest action in the case known as Montoy v. State of Kansas, which was filed in 1999. On Jan. 3, the high court declared that the state inadequately finances its public schools, and ordered the legislature to adopt “corrective legislation” by April 12.

The budget passed by the legislature this spring increases per-pupil base spending from $3,863 to $4,222 annually, a hike of nearly 11 percent, and funding for special education and bilingual programs.

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
Assessment Webinar
The State of Assessment in K-12 Education
What is the impact of assessment on K-12 education? What does that mean for administrators, teachers and most importantly—students?
Content provided by Instructure
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
Student Well-Being Webinar
Centering the Whole Child in School Improvement Planning and Redesign
Learn how leading with equity and empathy yield improved sense of belonging, attendance, and promotion rate to 10th grade.

Content provided by Panorama
Teaching Profession Webinar Examining the Evidence: Supports to Promote Teacher Well-Being
Rates of work dissatisfaction are on the rise among teachers. Grappling with an increased workload due to the pandemic and additional stressors have exacerbated feelings of burnout and demoralization. Given these challenges, what can the

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

Law & Courts Arizona Sues Biden to Keep School Anti-Mask Rules
At issue are two state programs the Republican governor created last summer that use federal COVID-19 relief money.
4 min read
FILE — Arizona Republican Gov. Doug Ducey gives his state of the state address at the Arizona Capitol, Monday, Jan. 10, 2022, in Phoenix. Ducey sued the Biden administration, Friday, Jan. 21, 2022, over its demand that the state stop sending millions in federal COVID-19 relief money to schools that don't have mask requirements or that close due to COVID-19 outbreaks. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, File)
Law & Courts U.S. Supreme Court to Hear Major Cases on Affirmative Action in Education
The outcome could affect K-12 policies when the justices rule on race-based policies at Harvard and the University of North Carolina.
3 min read
A man talks on his phone on the steps of Harvard University's Widener Library, in Cambridge, Mass. on June 26, 2020.
The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to take up major cases on affirmative action in admissions at Harvard University, above, and at the University of North Carolina.
Elise Amendola/AP
Law & Courts Supreme Court to Hear Case of Coach Who Prayed After Games in Defiance of School District
The U.S. Supreme Court will consider whether school districts may prohibit private religious expression by public school employees.
4 min read
Former Bremerton High School assistant football coach Joe Kennedy is in a conflict with the Bremerton, 
Wash., school district over his silent prayer after games.
Former Bremerton High School assistant football coach Joseph A. Kennedy stands at on the 50-yard line at Bremerton Memorial Stadium. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal over his dismissal for praying after football games.
Larry Steagall/Kitsap Sun via AP
Law & Courts Supreme Court Blocks Biden Vaccine Mandate Applying to Schools in Much of the Country
The justices ruled 6-3 to stay an Occupational Health and Safety Administration rule that covered schools in 26 states and two territories.
4 min read
Members of the Supreme Court pose for a group photo last April.
The U.S. Supreme Court blocked a federal vaccine mandate for large employers, including school districts in about half the states.
Erin Schaff/The New York Times via AP