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Key Kansas Senator Says Lawmakers Have A Preliminary School Funding Plan

Jim McClean
Heartland Health Monitor

The chairman of the Kansas Senate’s budget committee says lawmakers have a preliminary school funding plan. Legislators return to Topeka today for a special session. As Stephen Koranda reports, they’ll respond to a state Supreme Court ruling that says there are unconstitutional disparities in the school funding system.

Republican Sen. Ty Masterson didn’t release many details, but he says the plan would shift $38 million into a certain type of Kansas school funding that reduces disparities among districts.

“It’s just a true compromise. The schools are coming to the table and so is the Legislature to find a solution and keep schools open,” Masterson says.

Some school districts, especially in the Johnson County area, have wanted a so-called hold harmless provision included. That would protect them from losing any funding as part of the reshuffling.

Masterson says that is not included in the plan because the Supreme Court said the last hold harmless proposal made the inequalities worse.

Stephen Koranda is Statehouse reporter for Kansas Public Radio and the Kansas News Service, a collaboration of KCUR, KMUW, Kansas Public Radio and High Plains Radio covering health, education and politics.