Are public schools under assault? What does this list tell you?

Here is a partial list of bills regarding public education introduced in the 2013 session. Information was compiled from and
If you are concerned, share this information with your friends and get others involved. We think the bills aimed at public education, public education teachers, and public education students, speak for themselves:

School Choice:
HB 2263 provides a state-funded scholarship for special education students to attend private schools. Federal law in public schools requires special education services for children with an IEP unless the parents refuse, but private schools are not required to provide those services.
As introduced, the public school system would still be required by law to provide special services to students receiving these scholarships while the money for those services is given to the private school the student attends.

HB 2400 Corporate tax credit scholarship program; provides dollar-for-dollar state income tax credits to corporations for contributing to a scholarship granting organization. Most scholarship donations are already considered charitable deductions, but this bill provides yet another avenue for corporations to reduce their tax liability in the state and further reduces the revenue taken in by our already strapped state general fund. Some proponents said that these companies are already donating thus it will not affect state revenue but refused to name the corporations or the charitable organizations that will be losing funding.

HB 2320 and SB 196 Kansas Public Charter School Act Expands existing charter legislation to include private for-profit charter schools. These new charter schools would be exempt from most state laws and regulations, and would not be required to provide special education services. They would, however, be eligible to receive state funding for the students attending.

SB 22 The Corporate education tax credit scholarship program for low income, or special education students to attend private schools, similar to HB 2400.

School Innovation
HB 2319 Creating a coalition of Innovative Districts. Exempted from most state laws, while still receiving state funding. The first two districts to receive this status will report to the governor and the chairs of the House & Senate Education Committees rather than the Board of Education. Once more than two districts receive this status, they will form their own governing board.
SB 176 Creation of a coalition of innovative districts act. Similar to HB 2319, but expanded the number of districts allowed.

School Board Elections
HB 2226 Makes local elections partisan.
HB 2227 & SB 64 Changes local elections to November of odd-numbered years, remain non-partisan
SB 145 Makes school board elections partisan, moves them to November of odd numbered years
SB 211 Makes school board elections partisan, moves them to November of even numbered years

School Board Advocacy
SB 109 Prohibits the use of public funds for lobbying.

Teacher Negotiations
HB 2085 Restricts teacher negotiations
HB 2221 Equal Access Act; requires local school boards to allow equal access to employees’ physical or electronic mailboxes to all professional employee associations if the association chosen by the employees of a district has access to those mailboxes. This bill also prohibits notices from being posted on bulletin boards, or meetings being held in school district facilities (even after-hours) unless all other employee associations are allowed to attend.
HB 2023 Paycheck Protection Act; Prohibits voluntary payroll deductions from an employees’ paycheck for the purpose of contributing to political activities. The bill specifically targets teachers.

School Programs and Requirements
HB 2004 3rd grade reading proficiency before fourth grade promotion
SB 169 Read to Succeed proficiency before promotion to fourth grade
HB 2140 Read to Succeed first grade retention
HB 2289 Prohibits implementation of common core standards
S Sub HB 2391 Prohibits the funding of common core standards and creates oversight committee.
HB 2306 Directs State Board to develop science curriculum to encourage students to evaluate controversial theories, that the teaching of certain scientific theories such as climate science may be controversial.
HB 2280 Celebrate Freedom Week – mandates the teaching of the founding of this country during the week surrounding Sept. 17 (curriculum is not purview of legislature but our other elected body the State Board of Education). Innovative Districts, and the new private charters would be exempt from this law.

Revenue and Tax
HB 2350 Prohibits acceptance of federal education funds. The state receives $280 million in federal funding, excluding the federal food service program and the federal Impact Aid Program, for K-12 education. This bill would offset the loss in part by transferring sales tax money currently ear-marked for the Transportation Department, bringing the net loss to education down to $118 million and gutting the T-WORKS program. The effect on our Regents system of higher education institutions is unknown at this time, but the bill would prohibit any federal money from being accepted, including research dollars.
HB 2047 Requires local school board vote to use increased property tax revenue due to valuation increase (Currently, only a change in the mill levy requires a vote).

School Finance Capital Costs
HB 2005 Reduces the Capital improvement ratio.
HB 2264 Provides no state aid for capital improvement bonds July 2013-July 2015

School Finance Formula
SB 103 Changes at-risk weighting from free lunch to test proficiency grades four and above.

School Finance Litigation
SB 173 – Directs KPERS contributions to count as state constitutionally suitable funding.
HB 2290 Requires districts to hold election for approval to join school finance litigation.
SB 224 Eliminates certain weightings and pro-rates at-risk weightings to achieve base of $4492.
HB 2003 Mandatory 10 percent local option budget. (Does not change funding levels, it was designed to help the state in the court case.)
HB 2297 an act concerning school districts; relating to school finance litigation showing the state’s burden of proof as adequacy by including additional funding sources.

HB 2052 Concealed carry in public buildings, including school employees.

Constitutional Amendments
SCR 1601 Governor appoints judges, Senate confirms. Abolishing the Supreme Court nominating commission.
SCR 1608 Constitutional amendment concerning school finance; suitable provision for finance determined by the legislature.

School Finance Appropriations
HB 2143 & 2231 base state aid held the same through 2014

Students Rights
HB 2045 Imposing school attendance and minimum grade point average requirements on certain drivers. (Remember students in many of the school choice bills may not be subjected to this regulation)

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