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Kansas Lawmakers Wait For School Funding Decision

Stephen Koranda
Kansas News Service/File photo

The Kansas legislative session may be over, but lawmakers still aren't sure whether their work has ended. They're waiting to see whether the new school funding system they put in place will satisfy the Kansas Supreme Court.

The court previously said education spending was inadequate. In response, lawmakers approved $300 million in new funding over two years and a new method to distribute the money.

Mark Tallman, with the Kansas Association of School Boards, says members of the group like the new funding formula, but they still have concerns.

“We still believe that the dollars don’t measure up to where we believe they needed to be. We don’t think the court is going to say we’re spending too much,” Tallman says.

Legal briefs on the new spending plan will be submitted to the Supreme Court this week.

Republican Senate President Susan Wagle believes the new plan is adequate, noting that school funding is a large percentage of overall state spending. However, she says lawmakers will be ready to act.

“We’ll deal with whatever decision. We’ll wait for their decision. We will analyze the decision. We’ll get legal help and we will respond,” Wagle says.

Lawmakers may be back for a special session if the court finds problems with the new school funding system.