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Kansas House, Senate Planning to Debate Education Funding Plans

Senator Ty Masterson speaking at a committee meeting this week. (Photo by Stephen Koranda)

The full Kansas House and Senate could take up school funding proposals Thursday that are a response to a state Supreme Court ruling. Justices say lawmakers need to reduce inequalities between districts or they could shut down schools. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, legislators are hoping to get a bill approved fast before they leave for a month-long break.

The proposals shift money between Kansas school districts to reduce funding disparities. They also move some money from another fund to make sure no district loses overall state support. Republican Senator Ty Masterson, chair of that chamber’s budget committee, says his goal is keeping schools open. Passing a bill before the break will give the courts a chance to consider the plan.

“Then we have yet one more opportunity to respond, if that’s possible. The whole point of the speed is surety,” says Masterson.
Supporters of the bills like that no districts take a funding cut. Critics say the plans just shuffle money around so they may not really address the problem.

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