Kansas Governor Sam Brownback made few policy proposals in his swan-song State of The State speech Tuesday night. But he did say lawmakers should comply with the state Supreme Court and come up with an additional $600 million for k-through-12 schools over the next five years.
Governor Brownback has blasted court rulings on school finance in the past, but this time he proposed putting up the funds, while making sure they produce results. He offered a series of ideas to struggling students.
“We should have a higher average teacher pay than any of our surrounding states...75 percent of our students should be continuing their education after graduation...we should reach a 95 percent statewide graduation rate,” Brownback said.
Brownback said his plan would raise school spending without a tax hike.
Republican Senate Majority Leader Jim Denning says that is an unrealistic proposal from a governor expecting to leave office soon.
“Throwing that number out is a fairy tale. It gives everybody a false sense of hope. The Kansas budget obviously can’t handle that kind of funding.”
Brownback also said lawmakers should work to amend the state Constitution to block future school funding litigation.
From the Kansas News Service, Stephen Koranda has more.