The legislature failed to pass a K-12 education budget during the regular session, so finalization of the budget occurred during the veto session. Here's a recap of education policy from April's veto session:
- K-12 Funding, Special Ed and Open Enrollment -Passed, pending Governor's signature
- Passed a school funding bill that provides money for K-12 schools according to the formula approved by the Kansas Supreme Court (often referred to as Gannon).
- Included some new funding for mental health, school safety and a supplemental online math program, among other things
- Did not include the $30 million additional funding for special education recommended by the governor (state shortfall to special education is $155 million)
- Included an open enrollment policy that requires school districts with space to allow out-of-district students to enroll
- If the budget bill is signed into law as is, the open enrollment policy would go into effect for the 2024-2025 school year.
Most SMSD legislators (16) voted NO on the budget, citing lack of additional special education funding and concerns about the open enrollment policy, which did not receive a hearing and was added on to the budget bill. Three SM area legislators voted YES; one was Sen. Kellie Warren who represents you, if you live south of 99th street, generally. Click https://ksleglookup.org/ to find your reps).
We don't know if the Governor will sign the education budget. If she vetoes it, the legislature will have to continue working these issues (or override the veto) during the May 23rd wrap up session. Stay Tuned by following TW PTA or SMAC PTA facebook pages for any action alerts.
-"Parent Bill of Rights" and Ban on Female Transgender Sports Participation -Vetos Sustained, Did not become law
- The version of the so-called Parent Bill of Rights that passed had removed some of the more concerning and daunting requirements related to an online parent portal and library material review.
- Both bills were vetoed by Governor Kelly. While the Senate had enough votes to override the governor's veto, the House did not and so the vetoes were sustained and neither bill became law.
- These issues are likely to come up again next year, and potentially referenced during the November elections.
To see where all education related bills landed during the regular session, you can read KASB's summary and see SMAC PTA facebook for more detail.