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State Board News January 2012

State Board “Appreciates” New CTE Plan, Not New Finance Formula

On a 10-0 vote, members of the State Board of Education approved a motion Wednesday expressing “appreciation” for the governor’s commitment to additional funding for Career and Technical Education.  The plan, which was announced earlier in the week, is discussed in more detail in the January 10 Under the Dome.

Less popular was a motion to “approve the efforts of the governor’s office to craft a new school finance formula. . .”  That motion failed 5-2-3, with John Bacon, Walt Chappell, Dave Dennis, Kathy Martin and Ken Willard voting yes; Carolyn Campbell and Janet Waugh voting no; Sally Cauble, Jana Shaver and Sue Storm abstaining.

Discussion on the controversial motion included appreciation that Landon Fulmer, of the governor’s staff, had kept the board informed about the progress of the plan, which was revised numerous times based on feedback from various constituency groups.  It also questioned the amount of real input, along with the need for a new finance formula in the first place.

Sue Storm, legislative coordinator for the board and Ken Willard, assistant coordinator, will follow discussions on school finance as they progress through the legislative process.

Carolyn Campbell requested that the Democrat leaders’ plan for school funding be presented to the board at their February meeting.

ESEA Waiver Application Update

The State Board received additional information about Kansas’ application for ESEA Flexibility, commonly referred to as the ESEA Waiver.  The application will be posted on the KSDE website for public comment between January 13 and February 2.  The final draft will be submitted to the State Board on February 14 and if approved, submitted to the US Department of Education by February 21.

The USDE requires commentary in 4 areas:
1. College- and career-ready expectations for all students
2. Accountability
3. Supporting effective instruction and leadership
4. Reducing duplication and unnecessary burden

Department staff believe that Kansas is on track to respond to principles 1 and 4.
Principle 3 will be addressed by the adoption of guidelines by the end of the current school year.  KNEA, USA and KASB are all participating in the development of those guidelines.  The guidelines would be used by districts and local associations to review and revise or develop evaluation systems consistent with the guidelines in 2012-13, pilot those systems in 2013-14, and implement those systems in 2014-15.  All local work would be subject to the negotiations process.

Principle 2 is the area with greatest change.  KSDE is proposing an accountability model that will allow schools to show progress (“make AYP” in current language) using any of three calculations, based on either achievement, growth, or closing achievement gaps.

KNEA members are encouraged to review the application and offer feedback.  KNEA will also be providing specific feedback once the draft is posted.

2012 Meeting Dates Altered

To accommodate the work schedule of board member John Bacon, the State Board agreed to alter their 2012 calendar so that meetings in April, September and October occur on the third Tuesday and Wednesday of the month, instead of the past practice of meeting on the second Tuesday and Wednesday.

February 14 and 15 meeting agenda and materials should be available on the KSDE website no later than Monday, February 6.

In other action, the State Board

* Denied a request from paraprofessionals at the Kansas School for the Deaf to have KSD-NEA as their exclusive representative for purposes of negotiations
* Recognized the Kansas superintendent and principals of the year
* Heard the annual report from the Special Education Advisory Council
* Received a draft of new history/government/social studies standards framework [available on the KSDE website]
* Received a draft of new social-emotional character development standards [available on the KSDE website, school counseling]
* Approved recommendations from the Licensure Review Committee to approve 9 requests and deny 9 requests
* Approved 32 licensure waivers, 30 for special education, 1 for Latin and 1 to extend days for an emergency substitute
* Approved recommendations from the Evaluation Review Committee

Bethel College, continuing accreditation through 12-31-18
MidAmerica Nazarene University, continuing accreditation through 12-31-18
Washburn University, accreditation with a focused visit, through 12-31-13
Baker University, approved 1 new program, through 12-31-13
Central Christian College, approved 1 new program with stipulation, through 12-31-13
MidAmerica Nazarene University, approved 1 new program with stipulation, through 12-31-13
Southwestern College, approved 3 new programs with stipulation, through 12-31-13


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